Media Kit: AT&T Vital Connections
Vital Connections Videos
Our customers' and employees' safety is a top priority. To help customers prepare, AT&T is providing important communication tips for use before, during and after a storm.
Keep your wireless phone batteries 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 your car charger or having extra mobile phone batteries or disposable mobile phone batteries on hand.
Keep your wireless phone dry. The biggest threat to your device during a hurricane or tornado is water, so keep your equipment safe from the elements by storing it in a baggie or some other type of protective covering.
Have a family communications plan in place. Due to the change in wind patterns of the direction of a fire, it can be hard to predict if or when you need to evacuate your home. 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.
Program all of your emergency contact numbers and e-mail addresses into your mobile phone. Numbers should include the police department, fire station hospital, evacuation center, as well as your family members.
Forward your home number to your wireless number in the event of evacuating your home. Because call forwarding is based out of the telephone central office, you will get incoming calls from your landline phone even if your local telephone service is disrupted at your home. In the unlikely event that the central office is not operational, services such as voice mail, call forwarding and call forwarding busy line/don't answer may be useful.
Track local news and weather information on your wireless device. Many homes may be burned, damaged, or lose power during wildfires. If you have a wireless device that provides access to the Internet, you can surf the Web for the latest news in your area or check weather reports through MobiTV® or AT&T Mobile TV or keep updated with local radar and weather alerts through My-Cast® Weather, if you subscribe to those services.
Camera phones provide assistance. If you have a camera phone, take, store and send photos — even video clips — of damaged property to your insurance company from your device.
Try text messaging. During an emergency situation, text messages may go through more quickly than voice calls because they require fewer network resources. All of AT&T's wireless devices are text messaging capable. Depending on your text or data plan, additional charges may apply.
Take advantage of location-based mapping technology. Services such as AT&T Navigator and AT&T FamilyMap can help you seek evacuation routes or avoid traffic congestion from downed trees or power lines, as well as track a family member's wireless device in case you get separated.
Keep non-emergency calls to a minimum, and limit your calls to the most important ones. If there is severe weather, chances are many people will be attempting to place calls to loved ones, friends and business associates.
Winter Storm Essentials
It's important to have the necessary items ready in case of a power outage.
In addition to the essentials — bottled water, non-perishable foods, clothes and cash — it's also important to make proper precautions with your smartphone, so you can stay connected with family, friends and authorities, if needed.
Below are some smartphone-use tips and accessories from AT&T that should be included in your storm essentials kit:
- Use text messaging: During an emergency situation, text messages go through quicker than voice calls because they require less system resources.
- Protect your device from the elements: Cold weather can cause your battery to drain faster. Don't exposure your device to cold for extended periods of time — don't leave it in your car overnight or take it outside with you shoveling or sledding.
- Preserve battery life and purchase a backup battery: Limit non-emergency calls to a minimum and have a backup battery on hand to keep cell phones and tablets fully charged.
Here are a few from AT&T:
iSound Back-Up Battery can charge up to 5 devices at once, plus it has a built in flashlight. Available for $99 at att.com.
Mophie Juice Pack Plus for iPhone 4/4S is both a protective case and backup battery in one. Never run out of battery, no matter where you are. Available for $99 at att.com.
Mophie PowerStation Backup Battery is a 4000mAh external battery that can charge virtually any USB device at superfast speeds. Available for $80 at att.com.
Also, here are some tips from AT&T New England for protecting your devices in extreme cold weather:
- The biggest and most obvious — don't take your device out in extreme temperatures. When you're outside in weather like this, keep it in your purse, bag or pocket. Keep it protected.
- Don't leave it in your car or trunk for extended periods of time — definitely not overnight!
- Don't take your phone outside to shovel snow or sled with your kids because not only do you expose it to the cold, but you have the chance of getting it wet.
- Keep your phone or device in a protective case. We recommend something like the Lifeproof or OtterBox case. These are waterproof, drop resistant and dirt proof.
Your phone probably isn't going to stop ringing just because it's cold out, so if you expect to be out in the cold for a while and want to heed our advice about keeping it in your pocket, you could invest in a Bluetooth device/earbud with mic and call answer buttons so that you can leave the device in your pocket while talking.
If, however, you know that you'll have to expose your device to the cold for an extended period of time, turn it off and don't turn it back on until it has warmed up (This helps to keep condensation from forming.)
Finally, for protecting yourself, if you're going to use your device outside or in cold temps, get yourself a pair of touchscreen gloves that you can leave on while using your device.
Helping You Prepare
- Are you ready? AT&T encourages you to test your disaster preparedness level.
- Print the preparedness quiz.
- Emergency Communications Planning Tips
- Emergency Tool Kit: Family communications planning materials
- Read more about managing risk
Helpful Information in an Emergency
AT&T Disaster Response
We're ready for anything and can help keep you connected after disaster strikes. Here are some of the ways AT&T has helped those affected by emergencies:
In late 2012, AT&T teams worked around the clock to help the Northeast prepare for and recover from Hurricane Sandy. Read about all of our efforts throughout the storm and recovery in our live blog and view photos of the effort on our Flickr channel.
In May 2012, AT&T received a disaster preparedness certification from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). AT&T's certification is the first nationwide under the DHS Voluntary Private Sector Preparedness Program.
After Hurricane Irene, AT&T field technicians deployed generators to cell sites that lost commercial power as a result of Irene and set up Mobile Command Centers for communities coping with flooding and loss of power.
In response to 2010 flooding in Nashville, Middle- and West-Tennessee, AT&T supplied designated relief shelters with cell phones with unlimited voice and data airtime. In addition, we made a $25,000 corporate donation tot he Red Cross to assist the flood victims. Learn more.
After the horrific earthquake in Haiti in early 2010, we coordinated the donation of 10,000 wireless phones to victims, provided a $50,000 donation to Télécoms Sans Frontières (TSF), and temporarily waived wireless usage charges for customers in Haiti. Learn more.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Ike's landfall along the upper Texas coast in 2008, AT&T deployed 2,000 technicians, 2,800 generators, and portable cell towers to affected areas. Evacuees were supported with free Wi-Fi access, free voice, data and entertainment services. We invested $145 million and 2 million employee hours in recovery and restoration efforts. Learn more.
Immediately following the 2007 tornadoes in Greensburg KS, we provided a portable bank of public phones with free local and long distance calling and arranged for Kansas residential customers with storm-damaged homes to receive free call management services. Learn more.
We mobilized support services for more than 12,000 evacuees in San Diego after the 2007 wildfires, including free wireless calls, television and Wi-Fi internet access. The AT&T foundation also donated $150,000 to the American Red Cross to help with relief efforts. Learn more.
When Hurricane Katrina and Hurricane Rita devastated the Gulf Coast in 2005, AT&T, its foundation and employees donated more than $7 million in financial contributions, in-kind services and equipment. We installed 1,500 telephone lines and 300 DSL lines near evacuee shelters, and donated 35,000 prepaid phone cards to hurricane victims. Learn more.
Our Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) program is designed to restore vital telecommunications services for our business and government customers following a disaster.
Since 1991, AT&T has invested more than $600 million in our Network Disaster Recovery function — one of the industry's largest and most advanced disaster response programs — to help ensure the flow of wireless and wireline communications during emergencies. The NDR arsenal of equipment includes more than 320 technology and equipment trailers that can be quickly deployed to respond to events, such as hurricanes. The Network Disaster Recovery team works closely with local AT&T network personnel, regional Emergency Operations Centers and Local Response Centers to restore and maintain service until permanent repairs can be made.
Helping your business maintain and recover communications
- View an overview of AT&T's NDR program, team and equipment and information about recent deployments and exercises.
- Download AT&T's Business Continuity Preparedness Handbook.
- Learn how to implement a holistic Business Continuity and Recovery strategy with AT&T's Business Continuity Planning Checklist.
- Read results of the AT&T 2012 Business Continuity Study.
Related News Releases
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AT&T Leads Technology Recovery Demonstration in Downtown Atlanta
Atlanta, Georgia, March 19, 2013
AT&T Network Prepared as Major Winter Storm Approaches the Northeast
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AT&T Announces Continued Support for Telecoms Sans Frontieres
London, United Kingdom, November 14, 2012