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Posco and telecom giants hold disaster response exercise

June 23, 2024 - 13:52 By Park Se-ra
SK Telecom, KT Corp., and LG Uplus mobile base stations are positioned in front of the data center during the emergency response drill held at Posco's manufacturing plant in Gwangyang, South Jeolla Province, on June 13. (Posco)

South Korea's leading steel manufacturer, Posco, has carried out an emergency response drill at its Gwangyang plant to test the rapid recovery of mobile communication networks in the event of a disruption.

The drill, held on June 13, was carried out in collaboration with the nation's three largest mobile carriers -- SK Telecom, KT Corp., and LG Uplus at the steel production facility in South Jeolla Province.

This follows memorandum of understanding signed last year between Posco and the three telecom giants, which sought a more efficient approach to disaster response. The agreement paved paths of joint recovery equipment preparations, hot line operations, and regular drills. Before the contract was inked, each company managed disruptions independently.

This year's drill in Gwangyang, following a similar exercise at its other main production base in Pohang last year, identified 27 priority recovery sites. These included key sites such as the production control center and oxygen plant, selected based on business impact assessments and operational characteristics.

In preparation for potential power outages, Posco reinforced its batteries and secured 98 emergency generators and mobile base stations. Vulnerable communication equipment was relocated to mitigate damage risks.

The drill simulated a scenario of power outage caused by typhoon or heavy rain, which paralyzed the mobile communication network. The steel giant promptly alerted the telecom companies, which responded by installing mobile base stations and activating emergency generators at the priority sites to restore communication.

"Mobile communication is essential for swift communication and on-site response during emergencies," said Shim Min-seok, head of Posco's digital innovation office. "Through disaster scenario training with the three telecom companies, we have established a system to ensure business continuity and rapid recovery."

Additionally, the Gwangyang plant reviewed the use of satellite phones for such scenarios, protocols for intranet and internal network disruptions, and other emergency response procedures.