As some of you may know, we had severe storms and tornadoes here in north Texas a few days ago. In some areas, the damage was devastating. The cleanup and recovery will no doubt take months. It is always amazing to me how everyone across the state springs into action after a disaster. You see agencies from hundreds of miles away sending people and equipment to aid in the cleanup.
One of the newest organizations to join these efforts is the Texas Emergency GIS Response Team. For those of you that supervise GIS staff in your departments, you may already be aware of this team. They are called into service after a disaster anywhere in the state that mapping is required. I’m sure you can imagine the benefits of plotting the tornado damage path on a map or utilizing a mobile app that allows support personnel to identify and mark damaged facilities.
As we used to say in my east Texas hometown, this got me to thinkin’. If a tornado, or any other disaster, were to strike one of our facilities, do we have the ability to loan spare hardware? If the main data center for a city or county was destroyed and they needed servers, networking equipment, etc. quickly, do we have the ability to take some of our spare equipment and loan and/or donate it to them? I know that many of us have the ability to fail over to a cloud backup, but that requires an internet connection that may or may not be available at the time.
In my operation, we send all out-of-service equipment to auction the minute it comes out of service. Hanging on to a couple of older servers and switches might not be a bad idea after all.
Have a great October!