Digicel is providing hurricane alerts, tracking maps, supplies and public safety information to help customers in the greater Caribbean region prepare for2006 hurricanes. Hurricane season officially begins in June and typicallylasts through November 30, with many occurring during August and Septemberacross the region. Earlier this year, hurricane experts predicted thatpotential hurricane activity in the Caribbean would be well above average in 2006.
Digicel Cayman Islands is increasing network capacity and upgrading backupsystems throughout the three-island network to ensure customers can remainconnected to friends and family despite severe weather conditions. DigicelBarbados is also providing to its customers hurricane packs containingflashlights, car battery chargers and recharge cards in addition todonating phones and call time to the Barbados Disaster Preparedness Office.The company is also facilitating SMS alerts to the Caribbean DisasterEmergency Response Agency’s (CDERA) national disaster team. In addition tothe Cayman Islands, Barbados and Jamaica, Digicel’s hurricane preparednessefforts are taking place across all 20 Caribbean markets.
“In the event of a hurricane or other emergency, it is extremely importantthat critical response agencies, and communities throughout the Caribbeanhave access to communications in times of crisis. We are very pleased thatDigicel is once again supporting the region’s preparations for thishurricane season through the donation of phones and air time,” said JeremyCollymore, coordinator of Caribbean Disaster Emergency Response Agency(CDERA).
Digicel continues to remain active in supporting hurricane recoveryefforts. Following the devastating effects of Hurricane Ivan in September2004, the Digicel Foundation contributed US$5 million to rehabilitationefforts in communities in Jamaica, Cayman Islands and Grenada. Among thefoundation’s beneficiaries were more than 200 schools, as well aslibraries, hospitals and residents in the region. Digicel employees alsovolunteered their time to provide food and medical supplies to affected communities.
“Digicel’s primary concern is the safety and welfare of our customers andemployees,” said Ben Atherton, Digicel Group Commercial Director. “We wantto do everything possible to help ensure they are fully prepared forexpected hurricanes in August and September throughout the region.”
Earlier this year, the Digicel Foundation, in order to ensure thatJamaica’s Meteorological Services are at optimal surveillance strengthahead of the upcoming hurricane season, facilitated state-of-the-artequipping and rehabilitation of its weather, rainfall and meteorologicalstations.