50 Years Supporting Australia's Disaster Resilience and Response

Jesse Falk

In the late evening hours of 24 December, 1974, Cyclone Tracy ripped through the city of Darwin with gusts of up to 217 kilometres per hour.

Most Australians were not aware of the cyclone until late afternoon, the following day. Several factors delayed the dissemination of the news of the cyclone including the destruction of transportation infrastructure and the distance between Darwin to other major city centres. Indeed, ABC’s studios had been completely knocked off transmission and it was only when a local journalist was able to navigate through the wreckage to a local television station to send a message to the ABC station in Mt Isa that the rest of the country heard news of the terrible disaster.

In the week following, RG Ladd (Decon’s switchboard manufacturing arm) was on the ground providing critical repairs and installation of switchboard equipment to bring communications back online for the disaster-stricken city.

It's interesting now, 50 years later, that we are still working to provide support to Australian communities with the manufacture and deployment of disaster-response telecommunications equipment and emergency switchboards.

Over the course of the last few years, in particular, Decon have played a substantial role in providing critical communications equipment to disaster-affected areas, including the floods in NSW or the VIC bushfires. More recently, we’ve announced the roll out of a fleet of Smart Power Cells (SPCs) to cyclone-prone areas in Queensland.

But it’s not all about responding to disasters. We are also working with major telecommunications providers and government bodies for improved disaster-resilience, that is – providing a fleet of purpose-built products offering off-grid transportable power for at risk or remote sites. This proactive approach to disaster-resilience will hopefully mean, if an awful event like Cyclone Tracy ever passes over an Australian community, they will have the infrastructure in place to ensure continued telecommunications for affected residents and emergency services personnel.

#telecommunications #communications #disasterrelief #disasterresilience #disasterresponse #manufacturing #switchboards #power #transportablepower #offgridpower #greenenergy #renewableenergy #rgladd #teamdecon

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