Digicel is a major telecommunications provider in the Cayman Islands with a state of the art GSM mobile network providing 100% coverage across the Cayman Islands.
The strike of Hurricane Ivan posed serious challenges to the Digicel network, however Digicel moved quickly to replace over 50 % of the network within just three days of the storm, and Digicel customers were again making calls on a network that surpassed even its original strength.
Digicel’s speedy restoration was made possible by the company’s disaster-recovery centre, which has the ability to rapidly provide expertise and equipment to rebuild an entire network. In the event of a hurricane, the centre is contacted immediately and planes with technical crews, equipment, and relief supplies are dispatched right away.
In order to guard against future potential hurricane strikes, Digicel has further protected its network by acquiring additional cell sites, increasing the capacity at other cell sites and by raising low lying cell sites. Additionally, the company has provided generators at all major sites with additional fuel tanks for back up.
On the operations side, Digicel has a business continuity plan in place and a dedicated Crisis Management Team tasked with preparing for a storm strike, and spearheading recovery afterwards. As soon as a storm is identified as a potential threat the Crisis Management Team (CMT) is mobilized to monitor and track the storm’s progress, to ensure that all areas of Digicel’s operations are secured.
In the event of a hurricane, Digicel also aims to ensure that customers are informed and urges them to stay prepared. To stay in communication Digicel recommends that customers charge their phones, ensure they have a car charger handy, store the phone and charger in a waterproof bag or container, and add call credit to prepaid phones.
Digicel’s corporate offices and dealer stores are closed at least 12 hours prior to an anticipated storm strike in order to carry out necessary procedures to protect equipment, and also to allow staff to secure their homes.