Update October 6, 2016, 8:57am PT: In the wake of Hurricane Matthew, high call volumes and limited capacity between the U.S. and Cuba are resulting in “all circuits busy” for many customers. Sprint customers are encouraged to keep calls short and for emergencies only.
Sprint Network Preparations
“Sprint has prepared its network and emergency response for Hurricane Matthew,” said Jaime Jones, Sprint South Area President. “This storm has the potential to cause power and network outages in coastal communities here in the Southeast. But whether its impact is as a Category 1 or Category 5 we are ready and doing everything we can to help ensure our customers have communications services during this critical time.”
Sprint’s preparations include:
- Actively monitoring the continued path of Hurricane Matthew, while instituting flood prevention measures at Sprint network facilities and retail stores.
- Fully fueling all permanent generators and mobilizing portable generators into threatened areas to ensure they’re available to meet response needs based on the current track and intensity of Matthew.
- Preparing to mobilize Satellite Cell on Light Trucks (SatCOLTs) and Cell Sites on Wheels (COWs) within less than two hours if needed.
- Ensuring Sprint network strike teams are on standby and ready to deploy following Matthew’s impact.
- Verifying operational readiness of generators and emergency equipment at all mobile switching centers and network Points of Presence (POP) – the facilities where traffic enters and leaves the company’s global IP network, which facilitate dedicated data services for Sprint’s corporate and government customers, as well as other critical communications.
- Preparing to deploy charging stations at select corporate locations.
- Mobilizing Network Disaster Recovery teams and Sprint Emergency Response Team (ERT) personnel and resources to serve customers and mitigate storm impact.
- Providing any local public safety agency in need of emergency communications assistance with 14 days of service free of charge for 25 Sprint ERT wireless devices in states where an official “state of emergency” has been declared, including Georgia, Florida, North Carolina, and South Carolina.
Sprint also wants to encourage customers in the path of Hurricane Matthew to use the following tips for their wireless device to prepare and stay connected:
- Keep your wireless phone and backup batteries fully charged, and be aware that an interruption of wireline and commercial power could affect wireless calls.
- If possible, get extra batteries and charge them.
- In times of commercial power outages, a car adapter for your wireless phone should enable you to recharge the battery.
- Keep phones and necessary accessories in a sealed plastic bag to avoid water damage.
- Load family and emergency numbers into your wireless phone.
- Use your Sprint camera phone to take digital pictures or video of your property and valuables before the storm hits, so you have “before” pictures in the event of any storm damage. Don’t forget to send them to your email account for safe record keeping.
- Wireless networks sometimes experience heavy traffic during emergency events, so rather than call, remember to send a text message.