Two hurricane-ready “super switches” cover C Spire Wireless customers in South Mississippi, Gulf Coast and Alabama
Mobile Call Processing Centers Designed To Withstand Category 5 Hurricane; Handle Millions of Calls, Texts, Wireless High-Speed Mobile Broadband Data Traffic
Ridgeland, Miss., (May 31, 2013) – C Spire Wireless enters the 2013 hurricane season with two multi-million dollar, hurricane-ready “super switches” providing added protection and service for customers in south Mississippi, along the Mississippi Gulf Coast and in south Alabama and the Florida panhandle.
Both high-tech mobile phone switching facilities, which are designed to withstand a Category 5 hurricane with winds up to 200 miles an hour, connect millons of voice calls, wireless data transmissions and other critical customer services daily for C Spire consumer and business customers. In addition to hardened and reinforced shells, the all-steel and concrete structures house a large-scale 500 kilowatt diesel power generator, a grid of back up batteries and other redundant back-up systems, operations and technologies.
The latest forecast for the 2013 hurricane season predicts this could be the second busiest season on record with as many as 20 named tropical storms and up to 11 hurricanes forming in the Atlantic Ocean during the six-month season that officially begins on June 1. “These super switch facilities will help ensure that essential voice and data communications continue for our customers even when we experience severe weather and other life-threatening situations,” said Eric Hollingsworth, vice president of Network Operations for C Spire Wireless.
Both the 4,800 square foot, $2.1 million center in Mobile, Alabama and the 2,600 square foot, $6 million facility in Hattiesburg, Mississippi feature large switching bays, reinforced interior walls, concrete block and reinforced steel structures for added strength and a double steel reinforced roof grid that protects against debris strikes from roof tile, road signs and tree limbs that might be airborne during a hurricane or severe storm.
Each facility is designed to operate even after the loss of commercial power. “Our battery bays work in concert with commercial power to keep the facility up and running in the event of a hurricane or other severe weather. If we lose commercial power, this set of batteries will power the switch until our diesel-powered generators sense the power failure, automatically activate and come online,” Hollingsworth said.
“Our customers depend on their mobile phones and a reliable network to communicate with family members, friends and employers before, during and after a severe weather event,” he added. “These high levels of built-in redundancy provide increased wireless voice and data security, especially during hurricane season and other times of severe weather.”
Last year was the third-busiest year on record with 19 named storms, including Super Storm Sandy, which killed 147 people and caused $50 billion in damage in the eastern U.S., and Isaac, the only storm to make it onshore in the U.S. as a hurricane. Isaac pummeled the Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama coasts with heavy winds and rain, storm surge and record flooding that resulted in 5 deaths and $2.35 million in damage.
"Our network withstood the challenges posed by Hurricane Isaac because we spent a lot of time and effort preparing our facilities and employees to handle any challenges presented by this type of storm,” Hollingsworth said. “We know our customers count on us as their primary means of communications during and after severe weather and we want them to know that we stand ready to do whatever it takes to ensure that they can rely on our network in any circumstance."
The company intends to continue to aggressively invest in its wireless network to increase coverage, capacity and reliability. “In addition to our best-in-class nationwide voice and data offerings and leading line up of smartphones, tablets and connected devices, C Spire continues to find new, innovative and personalized ways to ensure that our network is there when customers need us most.”
For more information on C Spire’s network readiness, visit www.cspire.com/network.
About C Spire Wireless
C Spire Wireless is a diversified wireless communications company passionately committed to helping customers by personalizing wireless services designed just for them. The company is the first wireless provider in the U.S. to personalize customers’ experience by offering apps that fit who they are, services that anticipate their needs, and rewards for using their phone in new ways – all with seamless ease and at amazingly fast speeds. This news release and other announcements are available at www.cspire.com/news. For more information about C Spire Wireless and its products and services, visit www.cspire.com or follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cspire or Twitter at www.twitter.com/cspire or Google + or www.pinterest.com/cspirewireless