Media Releases - Press Release: ASC ReadyCONNECT™ answers call for Cyclone Yasi

9th February 2011, Adelaide:

Australian Satellite Communications (ASC) has rushed its disaster recovery solution ReadyCONNECT™ to cyclone-ravaged Queensland to provide emergency phone and internet communications in the wake of Cyclone Yasi.

The portable satellite solution was up and running within minutes in Tully and Cardwell, ReadyCONNECT™ was set up due to no power or communications in the area.  Other agencies including the Military started to use this as a central hub as a means to communicate within their own agency.providing always-available bandwidth for voice and data communications when all other communication connections failed.

ReadyCONNECT™ will be used by the Department of Community Safety (DCS) in devastated areas of tropical North Queensland as required, assisting the efforts of emergency relief agencies and individuals now facing the tough task of returning life to normal for thousands of Queenslanders.

State Fire Commander Assistant Commissioner Steve Rothwell said: "The ReadyCONNECT™ satellite system supported our fire operations in both Cardwell and Tully in the immediate aftermath of TC Yasi. We were in a situation where we had initially no power or communications and the system allowed us to communicate and effectively manage tasking, resources and damage assessments.

"Just today, the system is being moved into our base of operations where we are providing support to Red Cross and a number of other agencies that will provide a wireless network for all to use. The system has been of great advantage to us during this period and supplemented our existing systems well."

Paul Krzystoszek, ASC’s Operations and Marketing Manager, said that the Adelaide-based satellite communications specialist pulled out all the stops to respond to the request from DCS.

“It was a logistical challenge to get the unit, which fits in four flyaway cases, to the location due to lack of flights and road closures,” Mr Krzystoszek said.  “ReadyCONNECT™ had to be airlifted to its destination and was delivered within 24 hours of the request from DCS.”

ASC launched ReadyCONNECT™ last year, making high capacity, multi Mbps (megabits per second) commercial communications available anywhere in the Asia Pacific region that might experience an emergency or natural disaster.

ASC covers the region from its owned and operated teleport in Adelaide and hub in Hawaii via GE23 satellite.

 “With so many disasters around the world, one always hoped that a disaster of this magnitude would not occur in Australia," ASC Managing Director Chris Joseland said. "Lack of communication puts lives at risk and creates massive logistical problems.  Our solution is one that can be on hand immediately in the event that the unthinkable happens, as while we cannot predict disasters, we can prepare for them. "

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For information on ReadyCONNECT™ click here