VANCOUVER, British Columbia, April 28, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Today, TELUS is proud to announce it has been honoured with the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) Americas award for “Most Effective Recovery” for its response to the 2019 wildfires in Northern Alberta. The BCI Awards recognise the outstanding work and contribution of the crucial role that business continuity and resilience professionals and organizations have made during times of crisis.
TELUS was recognized for its response to the second largest wildfire season in Alberta in history, which included the Chuckegg Creek Wildfire, nicknamed the ‘Monster,’ and another in the Lesser Slave Lake Region, called the McMillan Wildfire. Both fires were highly unpredictable and together decimated 604,946 hectares of forest before being brought under control. TELUS owns extensive infrastructure, including telecommunications network offices; cell sites and radio towers; a vast network of fibre and copper lines; and large numbers of equipment across the province — much of it located in remote, forested areas. TELUS’ immense infrastructure had tremendous exposure to the wildfires that raged across the province.
“TELUS has a critical role to play in ensuring emergency responders can communicate while in the field, and residents can stay up to date on evacuation notices. Collaboration with government, emergency management agencies and other partners is critical in these situations. We also support evacuation centres and emergency operations centres at the municipal, regional and provincial levels, making sure they remain connected despite numerous location changes.” said Michael Galin, Director, Risk Management at TELUS. “The resilience and recoverability of our infrastructure and services can be attributed to proactive preparedness and mitigation activities, quick response with decisive actions, and vigilant monitoring. Our focus on preparedness and mitigation runs deep.”
TELUS’ Corporate Business Continuity Office activated the Emergency Management Operating Committee, assembling the organization’s cross-functional crisis management team for a total of 17 days. The team leveraged robust experience from previous wildfire seasons and strategically prioritized the maintenance and swift restoration of affected telecom networks and emergency services to ensure first responders could communicate while in the field. They also paid constant care and attention to the health and safety of TELUS’ field team as they worked alongside emergency responders to maintain critical network infrastructure, ensuring customers and potential evacuees in affected areas could receive emergency notifications and stay in contact with their loved ones.
A leader in social purpose, TELUS ensured the community was well supported throughout the devastating wildfire season, providing 750,000 in kind and through donations. As it recovered, TELUS donated devices and tablets to evacuees, waived mobility overages, brought hundreds of comfort kits to evacuation centres, and logged more than 7,000 volunteer hours in support of relief efforts.
To learn more about the BCI Awards visit: https://www.thebci.org/