Fire-fighting assets mapping with the Davao City Fire District - Hail Hydra(nt)!

Posted by GOwin on 13 September 2017 in English (English)

This post is a month overdue. I was in the Davao region last August (for business), but I thought I should touch bases with a few local organizations, including the local fire department, to chat about OpenStreetMap, since I’m there anyway. :smile:

My inquiries were enthusiastically received by the local fire officials as I introduced the goals of the HailHydra(nt)! initiative, and they decided they’re willing to host a mapa-thon. We set it during the city’s annual Kadayawan Festival.

Looking back, I should’ve pushed for another date. With many other departments busily attending to their own programs and tasks for the said activity, we ended up doing the mapping ourselves, instead of the expected participation of other orgs, we still managed to complete the goals we set for the day, with a little overtime :grin:

A Fire Hydrant Network base map

The main objective is to map the fire hydrants of the city, and complete the map of the fire stations and volunteer brigades operating in Davao.

image From 18 to 673 hydrants

Their official data actually reported 870 hydrants, but because of this activity, I actually discovered that they are reporting 197 duplicate data! :eyes: We started with just 18 hydrants in the OSM database, and at the end of the day, with a lot of help using the OSMHydrant app as editor, we completed the 673 hydrants of the city.

image The Fire Station and Hydrant map of Davao (and parts of Samal Island)

Working Offline, and Mobile using OsmAnd

Immediately after completing the map, they wanted a map (and an app) they can use in their Smartphones. OsmAnd is my go-to app - it’s Open Source and Free, flexible, and can work with off-line. Perfect! I recommend the community-maintained version from F-Droid.


We demonstrated how they may use the HOT Export Tool to create an offline database for OsmAnd, instead of waiting for the monthly updates. In the course of the orientation, we discovered a bug, which has thankfully been fixed in the upcoming version 3 of the Tasking Manager.

What’s next?

They are keen to include the use of OsmAnd and OpenStreetMap in their operational readiness program, and would like to explore how to incorporate fire hazard mapping and participatory mapping with other agencies, especially after having demonstrated the use of the following proposed OpenStreetMap tags to identify potentially dangerous areas in their respective areas of responsibilities and use in standard GIS software:

hazard:authority = Bureau of Fire Protection  
hazard:risk= (high | very_high | extreme)  

HailHydra(nt)! :grin:

P.S. I will update this post when I get copies of the photos we can share. I, again, forgot to take my own pictures.

Location: Darussalam, Davao City, Davao Occidental, Davao Region, 8016, Philippines

Comment from jose_ecu on 13 September 2017 at 12:09

Thank you for your post, very informative and educational. It introduced me to OSMHydrant and OsmAnd.

Greetings from Ecuador

Comment from Tomio on 27 July 2018 at 17:25

The Maps.Me gps application also allows you to add and view hydrants.

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