Hurricane Florence ravaged North
Carolina and South Carolina last month. Because I live in South Carolina and
commute to CommScope’s corporate office in Hickory, NC, I monitored all the
weather forecasts—they didn’t look good.
you see a Category 4 hurricane headed your way, you start to prepare. By
Monday, water and other provisions were already sold out (the storm didn’t hit
the coast until Thursday night/Friday morning). I remember living through a few
hurricanes in New Jersey when I was a kid. My parents made sure we had fresh
batteries for the radio and flashlights. That was the priority.
forward to 2018, I’m charging up back-up power supplies just in case we lost
power and couldn’t charge our smartphones and tablets. Think about it, if you
lose power, there’s no television to watch or radio to listen to for storm updates.
Today, we rely heavily on our mobile devices. Even my kids’ school-issued iPads
had weather apps to track the storm.
CLICK TO TWEET: Want to protect your network infrastructure from natural disasters? Put them underground.
to be clear, we live about four hours from Wilmington, NC, where the full brunt
of the storm was felt. Things are finally starting to get back to normal there (weeks
after the storm passed). Even being that far away, areas around us flooded and
received major storm damage. The one thing I told my kids (this was their first
hurricane) was everything will be fine. What else could I tell them?
the storm finally reached my neighborhood, we were prepared; however, how
prepared can you be? It rained heavy for three days. I was ready to lose power and
connectivity. Even with the wind and the rain, both stayed on. When the storm
started to die down, I went outside to check on the house and the rest of our
neighborhood. Everything seemed fine. At that moment, I realized one thing—all
our connections are underground.
live in a new neighborhood, All the homes are new construction, meaning the
builders and utilities put everything underground. There are no aerial wires or
cables anywhere. That’s when I remembered a blog my colleague Doug Wells posted
in 2013 following Hurricane Sandy. Doug said, “One way to protect your infrastructure is to place it
underground. Simply moving
your coax and fiber plant underground and placing it in conduit
is one of the easiest ways to protect that lifeline.”
thankful that our service providers put our cables underground. I believe it is
one of the reasons we didn’t lose connectivity during Hurricane Florence. And
for those who are still feeling the pain from the recent storms, I encourage you to
donate to the American Red
Cross’ Hurricane Florence Relief and the Hurricane Michael Relief.