Tech to the rescue: How Amazon, Microsoft and tech giants helped Hurricane Harvey relief efforts

Technology companies across the U.S. are stepping up to help Hurricane Harvey rescue and relief efforts, reports GeekWire.

Amazon and Microsoft turned to Twitter Sunday to help raise donations for the American Red Cross. Kicking off their new merger, Amazon and Whole Foods promised to match donations up to $1 million, while Microsoft pledged an initial $100,000 grant. Apple also added an option to its iTunes store that enables users to donate to the Red Cross.

Facebook activated its "Safety Check" feature, which allows users to notify their networks that they are safe. It also features a virtual command center that describes the event, forecast, list of areas affected and ways people can get involved in the relief, including starting a fundraiser.

Google's Crisis Response team created a Harvey Google map that describes evacuation route road closures, traffic incidents and shelter locations.

Hurricane Harvey hit the east coast of Texas Friday evening as a Category 4 storm, with storm surges and flooding similar to 2005's Hurricane Katrina. Some areas, including Houston and surrounding cities, may experience up to 50 inches of rainfall by the end of the week.

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