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Rather than me writing a paragraph or two on how important all of this stuff is, we’ll just post this T-Mobile press release which gives some helpful tips on how to stay in touch in the aftermath of any Hurricane. Being from Florida we’ve got quite a bit of experience with Hurricane aftermaths so we can safely say that text messaging will in fact be your best method of contact and Wi-Fi where available will be useful but likely overloaded with people trying to get online. Make sure you have a car charger this one is a biggie because a few days without power in your house and you’ll find yourself with a dead phone. Have plenty of food, plenty of water and a battery operated radio.
Most importantly though, stay safe.
T-Mobile Preps Storm Response Ahead of Irene; Issues Tips for Customers
Posted on August 26, 2011
By Tom Ellefson, VP Engineering, Northeast
As forecasters continue to issue advisories for Hurricane Irene, we at T-Mobile are rapidly deploying engineering and crisis resources to locations across the Eastern seaboard that are in the current trajectory path.
Our first concern is for our customers. That means that through all situations we will do our best to quickly resolve any outages. We have established a number of local Command Centers up and down the coast where our teams of engineers will rapidly move to fix any outages in service.
In addition, we have deployed network, technology and people resources throughout the Carolinas, Greater Tri-State Area and New England, including:
§ – Portable and backup generators, staged and topped off with fuel;
§ – Repair and transport vehicles ready to go;
§ – Battery backup at all of our critical sites;
§ – Microwave radio equipment in case land lines serving our cell sites fail;
§ – Engineers on call in neighboring areas to the storm’s path; and
§ – Cells-On-Wheels (COWs) pre-staged to move in and provide additional wireless capacity in hard-hit areas.
Over the next few days, T-Mobile will also be coordinating with local, state and national offices to monitor evacuation efforts and routes and will take steps to increase wireless capacity in those areas
Tips for Customers
Through all of these efforts, customer safety remains a critical concern. During mass calling events, such as this week’s earthquake in Virginia, and potentially with this storm, we recommend that customers take the following steps:
§ – Use text messaging to communicate instead of voice calls. Text messaging has a greater success rate in getting through the network during high-usage periods.
§ – Keep your calls short in duration.
§ – Utilize Wi-Fi calling if your device has the feature. This feature takes advantage of your in-home data connection to place calls in case the cellular network is congested or down.
§ – Make sure your phone is fully charged prior to the storm. Consider obtaining a vehicle charger in the event of power loss.