Sprint’s Network and Emergency Response Operations Stand Ready for Tropical
Customers can use Sprint’s exclusive NextRadio application for real-time FM
radio news updates and emergency information
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- July 2, 2014
As Tropical Storm Arthur continues its path along the Atlantic coast and is
forecast to strengthen into a Category 1 hurricane before reaching parts of
North Carolina, Sprint (NYSE:S) is preparing its network, mobilizing Network
Disaster Recovery staff and equipment, and strategically staging Sprint
Emergency Response Team (ERT) personnel and resources to serve customers and
mitigate storm impact.
Sprint’s preparations include:
*Actively monitoring Tropical Storm Arthur’s increasing strength and
continued path while instituting flood prevention measures at Sprint
network facilities and retail stores.
*Fully fueling permanent generators along the storm’s anticipated track and
mobilizing portable generators into threatened areas to ensure they’re
available to meet response needs based on the current track and intensity
of Arthur’s wind speeds and rainfall.
*Verifying operational readiness of generators and emergency equipment at
all mobile switching centers and network Points of Presence (POP) in the
storm’s path – the facilities where traffic enters and leaves the
company’s global IP network, which facilitate dedicated data services for
Sprint’s corporate and government customers, as well as other critical
*Ensuring Sprint network strike teams are on standby and ready to deploy
following Arthur’s landfall and assess impact on Sprint facilities.
*Providing any local public safety agency in need of emergency
communications assistance with 14 days of service free of charge for 25
Sprint ERT wireless devices in states where an official “state of
emergency” has been declared.
*Preparing and mobilizing the Sprint Emergency Response Team’s SatCOLT
(Satellite Cell on Light Truck) assets, mobile phone and broadband
devices, reservist staff and other equipment to provide wireless
communications service to local first responders, emergency command
centers and other public safety officials in the field.
Whenever a hurricane or tropical storm threat is issued, Sprint’s Network
Disaster Recovery and Emergency Response teams implement a standard
preparedness and response plan approximately 24 to 72 hours before the storm
is predicted to make landfall, including:
*Strategically preparing network resources, personnel, and Sprint’s
wireless and wireline infrastructure for pending storms.
*Reviewing and activating Sprint’s Network Disaster Recovery plans to help
ensure the continuity of Sprint’s network and overall service following a
*Determining the Sprint Emergency Response Team’s support of public safety,
emergency medical personnel, various state and local agencies, and
enterprise organizations needing communications support.
Additionally, with the continued launch of America’s Newest Network in 443
cities – including the hurricane-prone areas of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.;
Houston; Miami; New Orleans; Orangeburg, S.C.; Wilmington, N.C.; and West Palm
Beach, Fla. – Sprint’s network strives to provide the following during
emergency weather events:
*A better wireless coverage footprint and overlap to compensate if a cell
site is impacted from a natural disaster.
*Enhanced wireless data and voice capacity due to modernized network
hardware and software.
*Reduction of blocked voice calls during mass calling events.
Sprint and NextRadio provide free emergency FM radio access
For customers looking for additional communications resources during an
emergency, Sprint exclusively offers the NextRadio^® interactive FM radio
application, which receives FM radio broadcasts in a user’s local area through
a built-in FM tuner inside the smartphone. Available on select Sprint, Boost
Mobile and Virgin Mobile USA Android-powered smartphones, the free Google Play
app allows consumers to listen to FM radio stations on the go.
By downloading NextRadio, Sprint, Boost Mobile and Virgin Mobile USA customers
can use their Android smartphone to receive news and information from local
broadcast affiliates during times of emergency. FM radio can be a lifeline to
citizens when other communication networks suffer disaster- related outages,
such as hurricanes.
Sprint is committed to serving the emergency response community
The first of its kind in the industry, the Sprint Emergency Response Team
(ERT) was created in 2002 as a cross-functional group of full-time and
seasoned personnel with expertise in providing immediate restoration of
wireless voice, data and IP service, and communications coordination among
disaster relief and emergency response agencies, public safety officials and
Since its inception, Sprint ERT has conducted more than 6,100 deployments, and
provided emergency wireless support for close to 2,500 events, including
recently supporting the Army National Guard during an April 2014 training
exercise in Alaska, the 2013 tornados in Moore, Okla., the 2013 Presidential
Inauguration and the 2013 LAX Air Exercise.
To facilitate this multi-agency coordination during times of an emergency,
Sprint ERT maintains an inventory of 10,000 Sprint handsets, mobile broadband
devices, and fully charged Sprint Direct Connect phones at secured facilities.
In addition to having experience in military and public safety communications,
continuity management, and disaster response, Sprint ERT is supported
year-round and nationwide by an ERT Reservist program. These close a thousand
ERT Reservists are trained annually on all aspects of Incident Command System
(ICS), National Incident Management System (NIMS), Emergency Operation Center
(EOC) staffing and management, and disaster response.
Sprint ERT also maintains a 24-hour hotline, 365 days a year to rapidly
address client needs round the clock. In addition, during times of state and
federally declared national disasters, Sprint ERT provides 25 mobile devices
and wireless service free of charge for 14 days from the date of declaration
to state and local agencies.
Preparedness and post-storm tips for Sprint customers
Wireless consumers are also encouraged to use the following tips to prepare
for a hurricane, severe flood or other natural disasters:
*Wireless networks sometimes experience heavy traffic during emergency
events, so remember to send text messages, rather than call.
*Keep your wireless phone and backup batteries charged, but be aware that
an interruption of wireline and commercial power could affect wireless
calls. If possible, get extra batteries and charge them.
*In times of commercial power outages, a car adapter for your wireless
phone can enable you to recharge the battery.
*Keep phones and necessary accessories in a sealed plastic bag to avoid
*Load family and emergency numbers into your wireless phone.
*Use your Sprint phone to take digital pictures or video of your property
and valuables before the storm hits. Upload the images to a cloud service
so you have "before" pictures in the event of any storm damage.
For more information about Sprint’s hurricane preparation efforts, or to learn
what you can do to prepare for a major storm, visit
www.sprint.com/hurricaneinformation. Public safety officials seeking
information about services from the Sprint Emergency Response Team should call
1-888-639-0020 or email ERTRequests@sprint.com.
Sprint (NYSE: S) is a communications services company thatcreates more and
better ways to connect its customers to the things they care about
most.Sprint served nearly 55 million customers as of March 31, 2014 and is
widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative
technologies, including the first wireless 4G service from a national carrier
in the United States; leading no-contract brands including Virgin Mobile USA,
Boost Mobile, and Assurance Wireless; instant national and international
push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. The American
Customer Satisfaction Index rated Sprint as the most improved U.S. company in
customer satisfaction, across all 43 industries, over the last six years.
Sprint has been named to the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) North
America in 2011, 2012 and 2013. You can learn more and visit Sprint at
www.sprint.com or www.facebook.com/sprint and www.twitter.com/sprint.
Crystal Davis, 703-592-8139
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