Datacom CEO speaks about flood damage

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Datacom CEO speaks about flood damage

Affected customers can expect compensation.

Datacom chief executive Michael Browne has confirmed that a flood in the company's Globalcenter data centre in Melbourne on Saturday was caused by hail blocking drains in the roof.

Browne told iTnews today that one of five suites within Globalcenter was damaged by the storm. Services have since been restored, he said.

Affected customers should expect some sort of compensation from the service provider, "depending on the nature of the relationship with Datacom," he told iTnews.

"Needless to say we do provide an uptime guarantee," he said. "I fully expect some clients will want to sit down and chat through this. It is highly probable that uptime availability requirements would have been breached."

Browne said that compensation would not necessarily be in the form of cash and could be awarded via service credits.

Browne wasn't able to confirm network operations centre (NOC) reports that customers experienced a surge in the data centre's power distribution system that knocked out equipment, nor whether overload switches on some older PDUs failed to trigger.

"We cannot confirm on behalf of customers if this is accurate, considering the equipment housed is not owned by Datacom," he said. "We can confirm that any overload current was contained by the switchboard affected."

But after viewing the incident report, Browne said it became clear that affected customers were relying on a single power source for their equipment. "If clients had dual power, the story could have been different."

Browne said Datacom "always recommends" the use of dual power supplies but "ultimately it's the customers prerogative."

Browne said that Datacom staff were first made aware of a potential problem at approximately 2:45pm on the Saturday. Reports from Datacom customers suggest they were first informed within 45 minutes (at 3:30pm).

"I am pleased with the speed and efficiency of the response from Datacom's staff and supporting third party contractors," Browne told iTnews. "We have placed a strong emphasis on communication as part of our critical incident procedure and that has been received very positively by the majority of our clients.

"In many respects we have been one of the more fortunate businesses affected by the storm, noting that it has been acknowledged as an unpredicted and catastrophic weather event."

He said that "by and large the feedback so far has been supportive", with some customers "pleased with the response to date".

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