After the Super Cyclonic storm ‘Fani’ slammed Odisha coast on Friday 3rd May 2019 morning along heavy rain and winds with speeds of up to 175 kmph telecom networks in all the parts of Odisha, including Puri and Bhubaneswar had suffered extensive network damage for majority of the operators. Many BTS along the costal side were totally disconnected from network due to the loss of backhaul connectivity that lead the Voice and Data connectivity to reach a stand still position.
This hit was also observed in the neighbouring states of West Bengal where many BTSs were down as it was pending for restoration.
According to reports, the telecommunication connectivity was partially hit in Puri and Bhubaneswar districts of Orissa. However, all the operators are said to be working to ensure connectivity for the residents of the state.
The major challenge that almost all the operators were facing was re-establishing the connectives and restoring the uprooted fibre connectivity and MW links that form the major core network of Orissa.
To mitigate the impact operators have setup war rooms to deal with the impact of the cyclone Fani. Circle and corporate teams had been working effortless to minimise the impact and in this situation the major planning for the re-routing decisions were taken.
These war front decisions had to be taken based on visualisation of the network on GIS-based Inventory platform documenting each aspects of network node capability. In this situation where visualising the network geographically is most important, Lepton deployed “NetworkAccess” GIS tool in almost all the Tier 3 cities.Operators proved to be the most effective solution catalysing the decision making procedures.
As NetworkAccess gives an entire view of the network that includes the cable routes, BSC locations, RNC Locations, Radio sites, Microwave connectivity, etc on field picture becomes very clear and decision for restoration becomes more specific. This resulted to mobilising of field teams for priority restorations and mark completion of activity on the tool itself.
On the other hand the next major hurdle that team came across was to target field restoration teams and tracking them at the same time. Due to huge restoration activities many teams were deployed but to target the team nearest to the priority cuts was becoming an added hurdle.
For this hurdle also Lepton with its award winning solution “SmartTrack” portrayed as a rescue to get online position of the restoration teams and assignment of the trouble ticket to user based on their current location. SmartTrack with its web and mobile interface tracking, assignment and closure of fibre cut could be monitored online helping for more better chasing of the restoration procedures.
A total of 210+ fibre cuts were reported , pushing part of the Client network to a standstill position , but as soon as the cyclone subsided teams with SmartTrack were mobilised and at an average MTTR of 3 H 58 M 10 seconds (maximum time to restore) fibre cuts were restored and huge chunks of radio sites were turned up as per the corporate plans
Three days after the extremely severe Cyclone Fani hit coastal Odisha, the Circle and corporate teams of operators are still coping with the herculean task of restoring the network in the worst-affected cities of Bhubaneswar and Puri but yes the automation and visualisation of the network surely provides a much required supporting hand for making the network functioning as earlier.