Originally posted on Imersia NZ:
Memories from a short distance of the Christchurch Earthquakes are many. POTS phones work if the telephone exchange is working, but cordless phones don’t. Everyone wants to use their mobiles to get information and the networks may have limited cell towers in operation. Information people need to access includes where are my friends, family and colleagues. Other key things include which roads are open, where can I get petrol, food, water, shelter, transport, help.
The public were asked not to make voice calls on their mobiles because most cell sites were down. There were some good web sites put together such as Google mash-ups, but they are only as good as the ability for people to access the Internet. For many that wasn’t an option, as was recently the case with Hurricane Sandy.