Humanitarian Relief | West Virginia Mine Explosion

Montcoal, WV — April 2010

Bolivar Penn
An AT&T NDR satellite COLT (cell on light truck) providing
wireless service in Montcoal, WV.

NDR Deployed to Mine Disaster in West Virginia

On April 5, 2010, an explosion due to high methane levels occurred in a coal mine in Montcoal, West Virginia. Due to the mountainous terrain in the area, the team working to carry out the mine rescue mission did not have adequate wireless coverage.

AT&T's Network Disaster Recovery (NDR) team was activated on April 6 to provide a satellite cell on light truck (COLT)—the only equipment that could quickly provide the needed wireless coverage for the area. The team quickly performed a survey of the mine area to locate the safest and best location to provide coverage for the command area of the rescue efforts. Once the location had been approved, the NDR team immediately moved into the location to begin deployment of the COLT and a generator. Physical deployment of the COLT was accomplished by the early hours of April 7, and wireless service was up and running for the emergency response team.

AT&T's NDR team stayed on-site in Montcoal supporting wireless communication for the rescue teams until the recovery efforts concluded a week later.