Security company ADT kept operating through a major telecommunications outage earlier this month thanks to a cellular routing and backup solution from Vox Orion.
At least 23 000 phones in the Pretoria area went silent when Gautrain contractors accidentally severed a Telkom cable leaving businesses and residents in Menlyn Park, Lynwood and other areas as well as the offices of several major newspapers without telephone or internet access for most of a day.
"Our main Pretoria control room was in the affected area but we were able to use our Orion equipment to make all our outgoing calls while rerouting all incoming calls to other control centres. Our service to customers went uninterrupted," says ADT's Terry van Zyl.
"It took us just a couple of minutes to divert our 086 numbers to Johannesburg and Durban and operators there could log in to the Pretoria computer systems using our wide area data network. Our operation continued running smoothly.
"Most businesses implement least-cost routing to save money but that's a value-add for us," says Van Zyl. "Time is critical in our business – we have to respond immediately to alarm calls. So a redundant solution that enables us to keep operating is far more important than any cost savings. We were actually Orion's second customer – we started with the company when it was still busy developing its prototype device."
ADT has had to use Vox Orion's routers as backup more than once. "When there were several major power outages in Cape Town a couple of years ago, Telkom went down as well. But again thanks to the cellular routers and our own generators, we were able to keep going."