CSE498, Collaborative Design, Spring 2021
Computer Science and Engineering
Michigan State University

CSAA Insurance Group, headquartered in Walnut Creek, California, is a AAA insurer, one of the top insurance groups. They offer auto, homeowners and other lines of insurance in twenty-three states and the District of Columbia.

One major area of CSAA’s business is home insurance. With the increasing number of wildfires in recent years, it is important for both the insurer and homeowners to accurately assess property risk from wildfires.

Our Eye in the Sky: Intelligent Drone Video Processing project uses drone footage to determine high fire risk areas as well as the risk of specific homes, providing key information for CSAA in determining the necessity of action and risk associated with insurance throughout California.

To determine the fire risk of a home, a drone is sent to collect images of its surrounding area which are then sent to our web application, Eye in the Sky. Our application processes these images using computer vision to detect objects of risk, including things like dry brush, concrete and trees. Based on the different properties of surrounding objects, the property is given an overall fire risk score.

CSAA employees use our web dashboard to assess the overall fire risks of potentially vulnerable areas. A large coverage map allows employees to easily view the fire risk of large areas, as well as the specific fire risks of an individual property.

Based on these fire-risk scores, employees can take appropriate action either by providing recommendations based on the surroundings to mitigate fire risk or investigate further using drones or by an in-person inspection.

The front end of our Eye in the Sky project is written in React, HTML and CSS. The back end is written in Python using Flask to link the two. MongoDB is used as the database and the entire web application is hosted on AWS.