Social media gets the word out during Irma emergency - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Social media gets the word out during Irma emergency

By MARTHA MENDOZA
Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) - Social media has been a game-changer for Americans coping with natural disasters. Worried relatives, generous volunteers, frantic neighbors, even medical providers are going online to establish contact and send help.

Communicating is difficult because Hurricane Irma wiped out electricity and cell service to communities across Florida. Of particular concern is the Florida Keys, where remote islands have been cut off.

But Facebook's Safety Check feature is letting people tell friends and family they're OK. And many people are using Zello, a walkie-talkie application, to get word out about their conditions through other people who are able to spread word online.

Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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