In the aftermath of hurricane Ivan, Cable & Wireless sent staff to all the shelters that didn't have access to phone service to gather messages so they could be relayed to friends and family overseas to let them know that the senders were safe and well.
Cable & Wireless also offered cellphone battery recharging at our store locations. In addition the brightly coloured mobile van was equipped with computers and internet links and travelled to all the districts so Cable & Wireless internet customers had the opportunity to check their e-mails and browse the web. We also used that facility to sell phone cards so people were able to conveniently top up their phones and keep in touch.
Cable & Wireless was totally committed to the welfare of their staff of approximately 250 and their families -- the majority being Caymanian -- to ensure that their homes were secured from the weather and vandals, relocating those that had lost their homes, making sure they had food, sanitary supplies and water and providing generators for their homes, so staff didn’t need to concern themselves with the basic necessities of life and could instead devote their energies and attention to restoring services to our customers. Available to our staff in our One Technology Square Building was a medical doctor, a counsellor, massage therapy, ice making and laundry facilities. Our teams worked round the clock to rebuild and reconnect the country’s telecommunications system which meant that after the first week the financial district of George Town was able to return to normal working, and overseas clients of our financial services industry experienced little or no disruption to their services from offshore businesses here.
Perhaps the greatest assistance Cable & Wireless provided, however, was keeping its core networks operational throughout the storm. Even at the height of Ivan’s ravages, long after the competitors’ networks had been knocked out by the storm, Cable & Wireless customers were able to stay in touch with family and friends locally and overseas, and businesses were able to communicate their status and recovery needs.
Cable & Wireless intends to offer all of the above in the event of another natural disaster. Moreover, Cable & Wireless has applied lessons learned from Hurricane Ivan to upgrade its disaster preparedness and recovery plans, further strengthen its network, continue the development of its One Technology Square core systems bunker facility, more than double the capacity of its mobile network, greatly increase the footprint of its roaming coverage, and provide SMS interconnections so that bMobile customers can now exchange text messages with over 100 correspondent mobile carriers in countries around the world.