Reducing Disaster Risk in Honduras using Drone and LIDAR technology | Stories | GOAL Global
Reducing Disaster Risk in Honduras using Drone and LIDAR technology

Reducing Disaster Risk in Honduras using Drone and LIDAR technology

GOAL is undertaking a major technical study using drone technology and geotechnical/hydraulic modelling to investigate the link between rainfall and landslide in Tegucigalpa. This study will offer the city management guidance on low cost mitigation measures to reduce the risk of landslide through improved drainage.

Using drones equipped with high-tech light detection and ranging technology (LIDAR), GOAL Honduras will carry out a series of topographical surveys in the city of Tegucigalpa. The surveys will help to identify trigger factors that cause landslides, which in turn will allow GOAL to offer better informed disaster-risk-reduction advice to local residents living in at-risk areas.

The LIDAR System is a remote-sensing technology that measures distance by illuminating a target with a laser, and then analysing the reflected light. It is a reliable, highly precise, and rapid system commonly used in the making of high-resolution maps. However, LIDAR is used in many other fields, archaeology, geography, geology, seismology and forestry to name but a few.

The LIDAR laser will be mounted in a drone, and used initially to scan the Ulloa, Villanueva, and Nueva Providencia districts of Tegucigalpa. Ultimately, the districts of Arturo Duarte, La Nueva Capital and Laguna del Pedregal may also be included. These areas are considered to be at risk of landslide, owing to the urban expansion of Tegucigalpa.


The LIDAR findings on local geomorphology, hydrology and geology, will create a detailed map of the landslide threat, assisting in the design of necessary mitigation measures. These findings will then be shared during a series of public forums, to which the Honduras Union of Civil Engineers will be invited.

GOAL will also seek to establish strategic alliances with national institutions - including the Permanent Commission of Contingencies (COPECO), the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH), the Municipality of the Central District, and the College of Civil Engineers of Honduras - to increase their capacity to research and manage risk.

Note: The LIDAR survey is part of an OFDA funded GOAL Programme: Operationalizing a Neighbourhood Approach to Reduce Urban Disaster Risk in Three High-Risk Neighborhoods in Tegucigalpa, Honduras.

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