Natural disasters set records around the world in 2018. These were some of the worst.

How we prepare for Australia’s natural disaster season

We know that staying connected is especially crucial during times of crisis. Natural disasters like fires, cyclones and floods can damage our infrastructure and disrupt the connectivity we’re all so reliant on.

In our long history we’ve had many years of first-hand experience dealing with disasters, which helps up prepare for future events before they even happen. If disasters hit, our plans are in place so as soon as it’s safe, we can jump into action and start restoring services.

Graham Potbury is one of our field services team leaders in central New South Wales, and has been on the front line of bringing connectivity back to disaster-hit areas. Restoring mobile and fixed line coverage is a top priority, but has to wait for emergency services to make the area safe. “Most of the time, we’re champing at the bit to get started and give our customers a service, so they can talk to loved ones and get their lives back on track.

“We talk to customers in the area to let them know we’re working and to keep them updated – and sometimes it’s not until after a week or so that the enormity sinks in; it drives you to keep working in trying conditions….


Natural disasters set records around the world in 2018. These were some of the worst.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images Firefighters try to keep flames from a burning home from spreading to a neighbouring apartment complex as they battle the Camp Fire on November 9, 2018 in Paradise, California.

Natural disasters devastated communities around the world in 2018, killing thousands of people and inflicting billions of dollars in damage.

In September, at least 1,900 people died in Indonesia after a magnitude 7.5 earthquake and a subsequent tsunami with waves as high as 20 feet. The following month, Hurricane Michael, the strongest storm to hit the United States in 50 years, devastated North and South Carolina and killed dozens of people. Some of the worst fires in US history hit California shortly afterward, melting cars, reducing bodies to bone, and wiping out an entire town.

Much of the record-breaking devastation was caused by elevated temperatures on land and at sea. In a warming world, climate scientists say these disasters will only continue to become more severe…


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