Hurricane Irma hit Florida on September 8, 2017, causing the largest evacuation in Florida’s history. While hundreds of thousands fled, schools and public buildings closed, and even Walt Disney World shut down, some dedicated, brave Hostway'ers hunkered down in Hostway's Tampa-based data centers to take shelter from the storm and maintain customer’s uptime holding true to the Hostway Customer Pledge.
Unprompted and unasked by anyone, these Floridians stayed in Tampa to keep customers’ data secure, up and running, and to protect the data center facilities. While the Hostway staff was repeatedly advised to do what was best for their safety, they wanted to stay near the data centers to uphold our core values and customer pledge and keep their families safe. That’s why those that stayed brought their families to the offices adjacent to our data centers in Tampa, as it was far safer and offered protection from the elements.
Why They Stayed
Hostway has a trusted pledge—keep customers first in everything we do. The employees of the Tampa data center clearly take that promise very seriously.
With Hurricane Irma’s threat lingering, staff decided they’d protect both the customer’s we serve and their families by being inside the facility to work while their families lived out the winds, rain, and dangerous weather in the ruggedized Hostway offices.
One of the brave employees that stayed on campus is Charles Charmatz, Senior Director, Network and Datacenter. “Being prepared was our top priority,” Charmatz said. “Additional fuel and fuel tanks were brought in, food and water, adjacent offices and conference rooms were used for our family. The data center was the safest place to be for our customers and our families.”
Deciding to stay was the right thing to do not only for their safety but for another Hostway Customer Pledge—providing peace of mind. That includes 100% uptime guarantee per our trusted infrastructure. That promise was forefront in making sure power, connectivity, and security were top priorities, regardless of weather conditions.
Working Together Through Irma
The Tampa team prioritized and put customer communication at the top of the list. They utilized several communication tools besides phone and email that allowed customers to contact or get updates in real-time. Hostway's support team posted on their respective Twitter handle @HostwayNOC, on their dedicated Service Notifications web page, and sent multiple forms of communication before, during, and after the storm.
“Working as a team in the data center allowed us continuous communication with customers, the rest of Hostway, and each other,” Charmatz said.
Preparedness worked and Hostway employees, their families, and Hostway customers based in the Tampa data center stood strong against Irma.
Thank you to all those who remained, worked hard as a team, and withstood Irma. You definitely showed why we follow another part of our Hostway Customer Pledge—investing in world-class people. Your contribution and dedication are felt throughout the Hostway organization and our customers.
As you consider business continuity and disaster recovery planning for your organization, Hostway has the team that fulfills the promises that keep your business up and running. Check out our comprehensive infrastructure protection and optimization platform today. You can also call +1.866.680.7556 or chat with us 24x7x365.