When a disaster like the Pakistan floods strike, one of the most urgent priorities is making sure that all of the aid agencies responding to the disaster can coordinate their relief activities on the ground. At the most basic level, this means that they have to be able to talk to call each other and send emails. The problem is, disasters can easily wipe out the means of communication. Enter emergency telecoms workers. Like food aid distributions, emergency shelter and sanitation, emergency telecoms is the backbone of any relief effort.
Moments ago, I caught up with Dane Novarlic of the World Food Program who heads the emergency telecommunications efforts for Pakistan. We discuss what it took to get emegency telecoms set up amidst Pakistan’s epic floods.