September marks the annual recognition of National Preparedness Month, a time for individuals, families and communities to plan and prepare in case of emergencies.
To mitigate such risks to our communities and loved ones, we need to be informed of possible threats to our area, as well as the protective measures to take before, during and after a disaster.
The marking of National Preparedness Month this year is especially poignant following the recent natural disasters that have drastically impacted residents of Washington State communities, Oso and Wenatchee.
At Frontier, we are committed to being active contributors to the communities we serve. This commitment includes supporting our communities when they are most vulnerable, in the days and weeks following a natural disaster. In two recent instances this year, the citizens of Washington were uprooted by destructive natural disasters in their towns due to wildfires in Wenatchee and mudslides in Oso.
In the days immediately following the devastating mudslide in Oso, Frontier crews worked tirelessly to restore communications services to the impacted towns. Working alongside first responders, Frontier teams were able to restore hardline Internet and phone services to most of our remaining customers within five hours, allowing them swift contact with family and friends. Fifteen people hand-pulled and spliced over 14,000 feet of fiber cable to reconnect the town of Darrington. Similarly, in response to the wildfires in Wenatchee, Frontier and CenturyLink successfully restored telecommunications to all surrounding communities and 911 centers.
During such tragic times, the true spirit of community becomes of hallmark importance. During Frontier’s emergency reconnection of communications services to these towns, our employees working inside the devastated areas personally witnessed a tremendous outpouring of concern and support. First responders, community leaders, business owners and ordinary citizens joined together to help where they could.
When any large service outage occurs, whether caused by a natural disaster or other emergency situation, Frontier establishes a restoration plan immediately. In this instance, Frontier quickly installed satellite Internet services at the local hospital and pharmacy. Additionally, Wi-Fi services were immediately made available at the fire station and the community center for public use. In the wake of any emergency, we recognize the importance of our team’s immediate response.
We plan and practice our response for disasters with the hope that we will never have to enact the plans we have made. However, we firmly believe a failure to plan is a plan to fail. Planning for an emergency extends beyond the company level. We encourage all of the families and communities we serve to review their own plans for emergency response and preparedness. Visit Ready.gov for more resources to assist you with disaster planning and to learn how to create your own emergency action plan.