The global pandemic is prompting authorities around the world to turn football stadiums, parks and public spaces into ad hoc hospitals and testing facilities because conventional hospitals cant handle the number of those severely ill with COVID-19.
The scale of the operation can only be fully grasped from space.
Its more than voyeurism. EU countries are also using satellite information to better plan their coronavirus responses.
“Italy has activated [the] EUs Copernicus satellite system to help them map health facilities and public spaces to get clear understanding of activities, including public activities, during the coronavirus emergency,” Janez Lenarčič, the commissioner for crisis management, told reporters on Tuesday.
Courtesy of the European Union
The above image, produced and annotated by the EUs Emergency Management Service, shows Turin from space, with the purple highlighted areas marking hospitals and other medical facilities. The light green sections show sport and recreational areas across the city and the turquoise spots are open-air markets. Such mapping could help local authorities identify risk areas for transmission.
Copernicus is an EU constellation of satellites used to monitor everything from pollution levels to routine terrain mapping. Data from the EU has often been given to countries to help respond to natural disasters — something thats now sweeping the world.
Commission President Ursula von der Leyen last month used satellite imagery of traffic jams on roads into Austria to illustrate how new border controls aimed at limiting the spread of the virus were affecting supply lines.
“In such massive crises, overarching system strengths and weaknesses are clearly visible,” said Jan Wörner, the boss of the European Space Agency.
Beyond the EU, many countries are racing to build temporary hospitals to help deal with the pandemic.
In Golokhvastovo, some 60 kilometers south of Moscow, authorities are building a massive new hospital in what were previously open fields to cater for hundreds of patients infected with the coronavirus.
A field in Golokhvastovo before work began on erecting a hospital … | ©2020 Maxar Technologies
… and that same land under heavy construction | ©2020 Maxar Read More – Source