As the Puget Sound region braces for heavy winds and rain though the weekend, Sprint has made sure its network is ready to keep customers connected.
“The Sprint network in Western Washington is prepared for the weather and we have an emergency response team at the ready should they be needed,” said Annette Jacobs, Sprint Pacific Northwest Regional President. “Our primary focus is to ensure that our customers, employees and all the communities that we serve in the Pacific Northwest remain safe and connected during the storm."
Sprint’s preparations include:
- Actively monitoring the path of the storm 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 the storm.
- 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 storm 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 if an official "state of emergency" is declared.
Sprint also wants to encourage customers to use the following tips for their wireless device to help 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.