Katrina Communication Cut-off

A colleague from New Orleans said yesterday that his sister’s cell phone from that area stopped working, even though she’s in New York. But her text-messaging does work, which apparently isn’t uncommon:

Cellular phone providers said their service was severely limited, at best, in New Orleans and along the Mississippi coast, and they encouraged people to use text messages instead of making voice calls.

And the National Guard is using couriers. Why don’t they have radios?

In storm-ravaged southern Mississippi, the national guard was doing things the old-fashioned way.

“We’ve got runners running from commander to commander,” said Maj. Gen. Harold Cross of the Mississippi National Guard. “In other words, we’re going to the sound of gunfire, as we used to say during the Revolutionary War.”

One Comment

  1. 9-11 and the London Underground attacks helped show the value of text messaging. A voice call requires an constant open “circuit” whereas a text message is an open-and-closed transaction. It’s bytes compared to megabytes.

    That being said, it would seem the National Guard would have satellite phones at their disposal.

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