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Emergency Situations Call For Iridium Handsets Purchases

20 августа 2007
The Iridium 9505A handset is small, light and resistant to water and is an ideal communications option for people who work in or travel to remote locations. Bethesda, Maryland — Being interoperable with all emergency communications systems, including UHF and VHF radios, The New Zealand Red Cross and Magen David Adom in Israel (both members of the International Red Cross) have purchased satellite communications equipment from Iridium. These systems are capable of backing–up land–based, cellular and radio telecom services when they are down in crisis situations.

The New Zealand Red Cross purchased Iridium 9505A handsets. These will be distributed to various Red Cross National Societies in the Pacific, such as Fiji, Cook Islands, Samoa and Tonga. The Iridium phone is housed in a watertight"talking briefcase" and includes a SolStar Solar Charger, spare battery and external waterproof charging socket. These purchases were made through Wright Technologies, a New Zealand–based hardware and air time dealer for Applied Satellite Technologies (AST). Andrew McKie, operations manager, New Zealand Red Cross, said, "The Iridium satellite phones are simple to use and do not rely on fixed structures, such as masts and aerials. The recent tsunami demonstrated the importance of independence from fixed structures. It is essential to have this extra communications back-up."

The same handsets were purchased by Magen David Adom for emergency back–up use if the communications infrastructure is compromised in Israel or other remote locations where the organization has been asked to assist in rescue missions. The organization is also investigating an option to equip their headquarters with indoor satcom unites. These purchases were made through Gilat Satcom, a local Iridium Satellite partner.



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