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September 19, 2017 by Teresa McGaughey

Thinking of Everyone Affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma

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Up until 2006, I lived in Florida – yes the state that just got devastated by Hurricane Irma. I lived in a designated flood zone, which in Florida isn’t hard to do, given that 2.5 million homes in the state are prone to flooding during hurricane season. My home just off Tampa Bay was the target of many storm surges during the busy 2003-2005 hurricane seasons, and I was under an evacuation order many times. It's a very odd feeling to drive away from your home and have no idea what will be there next time you see it as I’m sure many recent evacuees can relate. 

Hearing the stories after Hurricane Irma made me think about the things we take for granted. For instance, yesterday morning, I got up and filled the coffee pot with water and made coffee using electricity, then sat down and read the latest news using Wi-Fi enabled by a high-speed Internet service. The hundreds of thousands of people in Florida still without power can’t do these things, and millions more were impacted by far-reaching electricity and communications service outages!

We know the electric, water, and communications companies are actively working to restore services. We also know mobile carriers are allowing subscribers to use unlimited data during this time of emergency. But what about broadband to the home? How are they faring in these difficult times?  

Planning for natural disasters is a difficult task and predicting how networks will withstand the forces of nature as winds reach 100+ mph, and storm surges measuring several feet high is impossible. At this time of recovery, Calix is working with our service provider customers to get replacement equipment out as fast as possible. Our collective goal is to restore services as quickly as possible.

As I look at the pictures of flooded cabinets and fallen utility poles, my heart goes out to those affected by Hurricanes Irma and Harvey. We're inspired by the dedication and commitment to maintaining power, water, and communications services to those affected by these historic storms. We're also committed to helping restore communications service to affected communities and individuals as quickly as possible. Our thoughts are with everyone affected or involved in the restoration process and best wishes for a rapid recovery.