PHILADELPHIA, Dec. 18 In anticipation of the snow storm that's expected to hit Pennsylvania during a busy holiday travel weekend, AT&T* is providing important communications tips for use before, during and after a storm to holiday travelers in the northeast.
Have a family communications plan in place. Designate someone out of the area as a central contact, and make certain that all family members know whom to contact if they become separated. Most important, practice your emergency plan in advance.
Use text messaging. During an emergency situation, text messages will often go through quicker than voice calls because they require less network resources. All of AT&T's wireless devices are text messaging capable.
Keep non-emergency calls to a minimum. If there is severe weather, chances are many people will be attempting to place calls to loved ones, friends and business associates
Program all of your emergency contact numbers and e-mail addresses into your mobile phone. Numbers should include the police department, fire station and hospital, as well as your family members.
Keep your wireless phone's battery charged at all times. Have an alternative plan to recharge your battery in case of a power outage, such as charging your wireless device by using a car charger or having extra charged mobile phone batteries or disposable mobile phone batteries on hand.
Keep your wireless phone dry. The biggest threat to your device during a storm is water, so keep your equipment safe from the elements by storing it in a baggie or some other type of protective covering.
Track the storm and access weather information on your wireless device. Many homes lose power during severe weather. If you have a wireless device that provides access to the Internet, you can watch weather reports and get regular updates on your phone.
Use your camera phone, take photos -- even video clips -- of damaged property for your insurance company from your device.
AT&T monitors and maintains its networks 24/7 and conducts readiness drills throughout the year to ensure that the networks and personnel are ready to respond in a moment's notice.
AT&T's wireless network preparations include:
AT&T representatives at any of its Pennsylvania, retail store locations can provide additional tips for charging extra cell phone batteries and learning to text. More information on AT&T's disaster preparedness can be found at www.att.com/vitalconnections.
*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.
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-- Adding capacity to the wireless network to accommodate increased call volume. -- Testing the high-capacity backup batteries located at every cell site. -- Maintaining a robust backup power plan, which includes deploying extended battery life and portable generators, and maintaining existing fixed generators. -- Topping off generators with fuel at cell sites and central and field-level switching facilities. -- Staging mobile cell sites and portable generators in safe locations for their immediate deployment once a storm has passed.
SOURCE AT&T Inc.