|1 — Harvey Shows Progress on Emergency Communications Since Katrina|
'One comparison offers a glimmer of hope amid the devastation: Communications networks have held much better. While connectivity was almost completely lost in Rockport, Texas, which was hit hardest by the storm, the Federal Communications Commission says just 4 percent of the 7,804 cell sites in Harvey’s path were wiped out, affecting 148,565 people. By contrast, more than 1,000 cell sites were knocked out during Katrina, preventing millions of calls from going through, according to a post-Katrina FCC report. Now, Texas’s 9-1-1 system has been overloaded with calls, but “those calls are going through,” says Adm. Jamie Barnett, former chief of public safety and homeland security at the FCC. “By and large we’re hearing that the cellular networks stood up. That means there’s been some learning.” '
2 — Hurricane Irma: Prepare your smartphone for catastrophic conditions
3 — And of course, Old Faithful — HARVEY AFTERMATH: Ham Radio activated for emergency communication
With Harvey wind was an early but transient issue. The longer-term problem was rain, not so destructive to towers. Irma's +200 kph winds will probably tell a different story.
As noted a few years ago, first responders have their own dedicated channels and protocols, which will be tested. As long as there's non-tower internet connectivity WiFi remains usable for the great unwashed.