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Iridium Short Burst Data® Helps Coordinate Disaster Response in Canada

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At A Glance:

  1. The Challenge

    Flooding in Canada’s major cities of Ottawa and Montreal prompted hundreds of evacuations and the mobilization of Canada’s LENTUS natural disaster response program.

  2. The Solution

    Canada’s Department of National Defense used Iridium Connected® T24 Whisper devices to track assets and personnel, as well as allow text communications to organize logistics for disaster response efforts

  3. The Impact

    A fleet of Iridium Connected devices ensured that hundreds of vehicles and thousands of personnel were effectively deployed to evacuate residents and protect key infrastructure.

  1. 2,600military personnel connected
  2. 400+vehicles, boats, and aircraft tracked
  3. 100+homes safely evacuated

The Challenge

In 2017, unusually heavy rains combined with melting snow and rising tides caused widespread flooding in two of Canada’s largest cities, Ottawa and Montreal. Hundreds of homes were evacuated and thousands of residents were left homeless due to the destruction.

As part of Canada’s natural disaster preparedness program, Operation LENTUS, thousands of troops and hundreds of vehicles were mobilized to assist local authorities. The significant logistical challenges of managing personnel, vehicles, and equipment required a reliable, easy-to-use solution for tracking and communication in unreliable weather conditions.

The Solution

To monitor and efficiently deploy this asset, the Canadian Department of National Defence (DND) worked with Iridium Partner T24 Defence for connectivity solutions. Service members and vehicles were equipped with the T24 Whisper, which uses Iridium Short Burst Data® (SBD®) to track whereabouts and provide back-up emergency communication. The Iridium Connected T24 system allowed the operational commander to view all DND assets and make tactical decisions about when and where to deploy troops.

The Impact

With the ability to quickly deploy and manage troops across locations, the DND was able to monitor 2,600 service members, 400 vehicles, seven helicopters, fifteen small boats, a navy frigate, as well as distribute more than 640,000 sandbags to protect key infrastructure like water treatment facilities, electrical networks, and bridges. Additionally, the troops were able to augment local law enforcement to manage evacuation routes and maintain order for residents.

T24’s Whisper device, powered by the Iridium network, allowed real-time and reliable tracking of our patrols and working groups during flood.

–DND Operative,
Involved in Operation LENTUS

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