November 24, 2022

Case study: Delivering in a crisis

In this week's blog we look at how our equipment can be used in an emergency setting. Mission critical is a huge focus for RFS, from offering solutions that support critical comms year-round, to our Hannover team delivering tailor-made cable fast to deliver coverage in the 2021 German floods, you can read more from Andreas Bergmeister, Global Product Manager - Transmission Lines.

Andreas Bergmeister, Global Product Manager Transmission Lines

Just over 12 months ago it is difficult to forget the images of widespread flooding in Germany. They left a trail of destruction in Germany and neighboring countries, with the Ahr Valley feeling the worst of the impact. It was a stark reminder of the real-world impact of climate change, demonstrating how keenly it will be felt unless, as a global community, we take action. 

At RFS we are proud to be committed to environmental targets and making strides to run our operations as greenly and cleanly as possible. In addition to treating the cause of climate change we are also committed to helping where possible to address the symptoms. We have previously spoken about how our robust high-wind, high-ice equipment is being used to protect infrastructure in extreme weather but with the flooding in Germany, we had to be more reactive in how we were able to help. 

A consequence of the flooding was the destruction of homes, businesses along with key infrastructure. The floods impacted hundreds of cell sites leaving hundreds of thousands in the region without connectivity which is more important than ever in the face of a crisis. Operators in the regions rapidly deployed engineers to fix sites, getting them up and running as quickly as possible, however a stopgap was needed. Operators needed to be able to deploy mobile cell sites quickly to get the region connected as quickly as possible. 

RFS Hannover manufacturing facility is located just over 300km away and was able to help the operation to get mobile cell sites deployed quickly. The mobile site setups needed bespoke cable lengths to operate - these would usually take months to deliver from an overseas supplier. However, as a relatively local business, RFS was able to manufacture the cables needed and have them delivered as part of the mobile solution within days. 

Alongside this project, RFS solutions are also used every day by German Emergency Services to ensure constant connectivity between urgent responders. The mission critical systems allow Fire Departments, Police and Ambulances, along with the volunteer-led THW (Technisches Hilfswerk) to remain informed and therefore work as safely and efficiently as possible at all times. 

On the deployment, Andreas Bergmeister, Global Product Manager - Transmission Lines comments “At RFS we have experience in mission critical and emergency comms and support this in Germany year-round, but we do not usually need to deliver on an emergency timeline. However, the capabilities and flexibility we have with a Germany-based manufacturing facility meant we were uniquely placed to manufacture to specification exactly the solution needed and deliver it as quickly as possible. We are incredibly proud to have been able to lend a helping hand and deliver equipment so quickly where it was urgently needed.” 

About the author

Andreas Bergmeister

Global Product Manager Transmission Lines