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Category Archives: Disaster

Meteor strike knocks out mobile networks

How exactly, is the question. In the case of a tsunami or a tidal surge we know what causes the damage. What were knocked out: power? towers? Was it caused by congestion? I hope readers will fill in the gaps in our knowledge. Russians are not the most forthcoming on these matters. He spoke to […]

Making mobile networks resilient in the face of disasters

There is a trade off between operating networks that are able to keep operating in the face of disasters and keeping down costs. For example, a 24 hr battery will yield a more robust BTS than a 8 hour battery. But as the FCC initiated discussion revealed, 24 hr batteries impose additional costs on operators. […]

Lasting impacts of IDRC funded research

It was seven years to this coming January that we launched our Last Mile HazInfo project, just one year after the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami. It’s good to know that the project is still talked about. We are beginning work on a Tsunami + 10 initiative that will assess the impacts of post-tusnami. LIRNEasia also […]

New Year’s Eve – a test for SMS-based Mass Alerting

Telcos are consciously gearing up to with stand the “flash-crowd” New Year’s Eve SMS loads. Pushing the SMS loads at the mean time of 00:00:00 plus or minus a minute is stressful. SMS Controllers (SMSC) have to handle the massive burst. How does this relate to mass alerting? LINREasia’s thinking, the same as the Sri […]

ITU-D facilitates hands-on exposure with CAP-enabled Sahana messaging software

The International Telecommunications Union – Development (ITU-D) sector recruited me to introduce ways in which the Common Alerting Protocol (CAP) interoperable emergency communication standard could be operationalized in the region. The audience comprised member state delegates from their respective telecommunications regulatory authorities and their emergency operations centres (or disaster management centres). The workshop: “Use of […]

They are getting rid of warning sirens in Oregon; Sri Lanka is still installing

The gist of the NYT report is that some residents of coastal Oregon are unhappy about the discontinuance of tsunami warning sirens. But in these matters what one has to look at is the science. Supporters of the county’s decision, including some coastal hazard experts, say that the sirens, comforting as they may sound in […]

Progress on first-responder communication, but not enough

Both in our HazInfo project and in the work we did subsequently in the Maldives, we addressed the problems of first-responder communication. The report from the NYT highlights the progress that has been made since 9/11, but also the remaining gaps (identified and written about in the 1990s by our colleagues Peter Anderson and Gordon […]

Sahana software ensures hot meals delivered to Hurricane Sandy victims

“Sahana software is being used to support the collection and fulfilment of requests for assistance and volunteers from the neighborhoods hardest hit by Hurricane Sandy: the Rockaways in Queens, Coney Island and Red Hook in Brooklyn, Staten Island and communities along the New Jersey coast. Sahana allows organizations to more effectively prioritize and dispatch resources […]

Empowering Communities with Voice Technologies for Crisis Management

Use the embedded frame below or click here to view the story. Empowering Communities with Voice-enabled Technologies for Crisis Management on Prezi

Roaming as a disaster response

A significant number of base stations (around 20% or lower) in the Hurricane Sandy affected areas are supposed to have gone down, mainly due to electricity problems. I am sure the systems here in South Asia are a lot more robust in this aspect because our baseline expectations of the reliability of the electricity networks […]

Sahana software for Hurricane Sandy: New York City is using it

The City’s Office of Emergency Management has been relying on Sahana software for its shelter management and registration programs since 2007. Sri Lanka also has it. The Sahana Software Foundation is assisting the City of New York in its use of Sahana software to manage its response to Hurricane Sandy. Sahana software foundation is not […]

Cell broadcasting used to warn public about Sandy

With slow-moving Sandy leaving New York State, they are counting the dead. It appears that 22 people died. Each death is a tragedy that the disaster managers would have loved to avoid. But can you imagine what the toll would have been if not for extensive planning and early warning? The word “cell broadcasting” is […]

A plea for closer communication between DMC and the people when disaster looms

Right now disaster awareness is high. A cyclone was heading toward Sri Lanka’s Northeast Coast but has apparently veered off toward the Indian East Coast. Flooding has started in different parts of the country, trees are falling, transport has been affected. Of course, people are very aware of Hurricane Sandy and the US East Coast […]

TVEAP-LIRNEasia film short-listed for UNISDR award

A short film made as part of Nuwan Waidyanatha’s action research project assessing the efficacy of voice and text in disaster communication has been shortlisted for an award. TVE Asia Pacific’s short film, Do You Hear Me, is one of 11 finalists in the first Asian Film Festival on Disaster Risk Reduction which will take […]

Summary of the VoiceICT4D project outcomes

VoiceICT4D project page LIRNEasia, through a stakeholder forum, advocated the Sri Lanka Disaster Management Center (DMC) to move towards a multi-agency situational-awareness platform by creating a register of alerting authorities and then sharing it’s call center and Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system resources for emergency communication. The “Do you Hear Me” video, communicating the need […]

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