4.4 Conducting an assessment of the telecommunications and IT situation

It is very important to know exactly what communications equipment is available to the emergency response staff, and to assess what their needs are likely to be during the assessment and during the following response.

  • Assess the impact of the disaster on telecommunications and IT infrastructure.
  • Prepare an inventory of telecommunications systems as soon as possible. This should list all communication systems and assets available in the country. See Annex 20.6 Telecommunications and IT inventory.
  • Coordinate with other stakeholders to identify what systems and resources are being used by the broader humanitarian community.
  • Obtain information on any government regulations that apply. There are often restrictions on using radios (in addition to import restrictions).
  • Investigate the availability of telecommunications and IT equipment in local and regional markets. It is important that approximate costs and lead times (time to purchase and install) are known to the team at this time, as these factors can affect their decision-making.