MANILA, Philippines — In the face of heavy monsoon rains that inundated most of Metro Manila on Tuesday, the country’s telecommunications firms have beefed up efforts to sustain their mobile networks in aid of the government’s rescue initiatives.
In a statement, Ayala-led Globe Telecom said they have already deployed Libreng Tawag services in flood-hit areas such as Marikina and Navotas.
Through this service, evacuees can make calls and send text messages to anyone for free in order to update their relatives of their current situation.
“We have contingency measures in place, such as augmentation of power supply for our cellsites and wireline cabinets,” the telco said.
Globe also advised customers to contact the following numbers in case they need assistance: 730-1000 from any landline or toll-free at 211 from any Globe or TM mobile number.
Smart Communications, meanwhile, assured subscribers that their networks would remain in operation despite the devastation wrought by heavy monsoon rains in the metro.
In its official Twitter account, Smart advised its subscribers to charge their mobile phones so they can remain in contact with relatives and officials in case they need rescuing.
The Pangilinan-led telco likewise gave tips on which mobile services to subscribe to in order to get more information about the storm or to keep communication going between families.
Some of these services include:
- Get PAGASA SMS Update – text ULAN
- Request for emergency load by calling *808+number of your family/friend. eg. *80809181234567
- Dial *SOS (767) enables Smart subscribers with zero balance to send 3 SMS to a Smart # plus P1 airtime.
- Smart Person Finder – Track family members via their Smart phones: Text FIND
During disasters, mobile communication has been a key element in coordinating relief and rescue efforts and ensuring the safe evacuation of residents in flood-prone areas. In some ways, having a mobile phone handy — even the most basic model — can even save lives in a number of ways.