Disasters

  • New York State gives company 45 days to fix problems

    New York State awarded M/A Com a contract for building the infrastructure for the statewide wireless network for first responders; the contract was to be completed by December 2006; state comptroller office, citing the delay and nearly 20 other deficiencies, gives company 45 days to fix problem or see its contract revoked

  • New metrics to help measure enterprise security

    A non-profit IT security organization is working toward releasing a set of metrics for enterprises to measure the effectiveness of their security controls

  • New first response RFID system developed

    In a scene of a disaster, first responders want to make sure they know where each member of the rescue team is; they often also need to tag and monitor the whereabouts of equipment and gear; long-range RFID is the solution

  • Major flooding risk could span decades after Chinese earthquake

    Earthquake-induced landslides cause rocks and sediment to be dumped in the river valleys, and this material then moves downstream to settle on river beds; this means that river and lakes become shallower, pausing much greater risks of flooding for decades to come

  • Designing earthquake-resistant buildings

    New NIST publication series addresses design of earthquake-resistant structures

  • Spending on IT security to grow

    Security makes up 10 percent of overall IT operating budgets in 2008, up from 8 percent in 2007; trend to continue

  • This week in 1941: Galloping Gertie bridge collapses

    The Tacoma Narrows bridge, known as Galloping Gertie, was a 5,000 ft-long, two-lane suspension bridge — the third longest of its kind in the world; it was the first suspension bridge to use plate girders, rather than open lattice beam trusses, to support the roadbed meaning that wind could not pass through the truss but was diverted above and below the structure; 67 years ago this week the wind was just too strong

  • Gustav brings down cell, Internet service

    Power outages caused by Hurricane Gustav brought down cellular and Internet service in parts of Louisiana, but the storm’s impact was much milder than Katrina’s

  • Bureaucratic bafflegab hobbles Canada's disaster readiness, report says

    New Senate report slams the Canadian government’s disaster coordination efforts; the report suggests that past floods, ice storms, the SARs epidemic, blackouts in Canada, and the 9/11 attacks should have — but have not — served as a wake up call for various levels of government to hatch concrete plans to work together to ward off disaster

  • Sprint's preparations for Gustav

    Sprint Nextel invested $59 million in network preparations in coastal communities; bolstering preparations aimed to help both customers and first responders

  • Virtualization is important for back up and recovery

    Server virtualization, that is, the separation of functionality from the underlying hardware, offers organizations many advantages in preparing for coping with and recovering from disasters, but it is not a panacea

  • D.C. tests interoperable public safety system

    Interoperability between radio and mobile Internet sought, and new technology — called Radio Over Wireless Broadband, or ROW-B — has the potential to save first responders time in an emergency

  • China quake forces rethink over hazard maps

    Following the Sichuan earthquake, in which more than 65,000 people died, researchers say that similar regions may also be in danger and that seismic hazard maps should be redrawn

  • Modified helicopters help in search and rescue missions

    Researchers in Hong Kong develop a helicopter installed with a video camera and linked to the Global Positioning System (GPS), and which flies on its own on a preset course; helicopter used to survey the Sichuan earthquake area; researchers in U.K. work on a similar concept — but one which envisions using a swarm of self-coordinating helicopters

  • U.K. SMEs unprepared for business risk

    YouGov survey shows small and medium-sized firms lack business continuity plans; only one third of SMEs are taking steps to ensure their business will continue to operate normally in the event of disruption