AT&T to Conduct Network Disaster Recovery Exercise in San Diego
Wildfires. Earthquakes. Mudslides. These are not scenes from the latest Hollywood disaster movie, but the realities of living and working in San Diego and throughout the Golden State. And as wildfire season continues to be an ever present threat in San Diego and Southern California, AT&T* has announced it will hold a Network Disaster Recovery Exercise (NDR) in San Diego at PETCO Park from Oct. 13 to 23, 2009.
AT&T’s NDR exercise, conducted several times each year, is part of AT&T’s own comprehensive business continuity plan to ensure communications can be restored quickly to its government, business and consumer clients if a disaster damages or destroys parts of its network. By conducting an NDR exercise, AT&T can strengthen its business continuity and disaster response services in order to minimize network downtime.
The AT&T NDR exercise is being held in concert with the AT&T Business Continuity Forum, which will be held at the Omni San Diego Hotel and is expected to draw several hundred business and government leaders. The Forum will provide participants with an overview of safeguarding business applications and innovations in network security.
“Just two years ago, San Diegans experienced firsthand how critical communications networks are in times of crisis, as a series of devastating wildfires displaced hundreds of thousands of residents, destroyed thousands of homes and scorched close to 400,000 acres in San Diego County,” said San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. “AT&T’s efforts in 2007 were key to providing first responders, relief agencies and residents with a communications lifeline during that critical time. I’m pleased they’ve returned to San Diego to practice their response capabilities and to work with local businesses, state and local governments to highlight the importance of emergency preparedness and disaster planning.”
In response to the 2007 San Diego fires, AT&T’s NDR team deployed a Satellite COLT (Cell on Light Truck) and several team members to the impacted area to provide emergency communications for first responders and emergency workers and for San Diego residents who were displace by wildfires. The COLT remained in service until normal network services were restored to the area.
The AT&T NDR San Diego exercise is the 55th technical recovery exercise conducted in the field. The NDR exercise will feature more than 25 disaster recovery trailers and vehicles, including 18 semi-tractor trailers, emergency communications vehicles, hazmat trailers, two Satellite COLTs (cell on light truck), and some smaller utility and support trailers.
Last year, AT&T announced that the NDR team consolidated wireless, wired and backbone network recovery capabilities, enabling AT&T to bring an integrated approach to disaster recovery that helps ensure the flow of both wireless and wired communications during times of need.
“With the wildfire season ongoing, the importance of ensuring communications combined with the need to be fully prepared is critical for both business and government,” said Kevin Peters, executive vice president of AT&T’s Global Network Operations. “With the AT&T NDR Exercise, our San Diego metropolitan area business and state and local government agency customers can get a firsthand look at how AT&T’s integrated approach to disaster recovery can help them maintain communications during a disaster.”
During the last 15 years, AT&T has invested more than $500 million in its NDR program, which includes specially trained managers, engineers and technicians from across the United States, as well as a fleet of more than 300 self-contained equipment trailers and support vehicles that house the same equipment and components as an AT&T data-routing or voice-switching center.
The NDR team also includes a single National Security Emergency Preparedness management team, which works directly with federal, state and local government agencies to prepare disaster response strategies and coordinate recovery efforts.
Since 1992, the NDR team has been activated more than a dozen times in response to disasters, including restoring service after the tornadoes in Oklahoma in 1999; the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Center in 2001; wildfires in San Diego in 2003 and 2007; Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005; and Hurricanes Gustav, Dolly and Ike in 2008.
More information on AT&T’s NDR program is available at www.att.com/ndr.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
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