A world wireless association has announced plans for a relief effort within the wireless broadband industry for victims of this week's devastating South-East Asia tsunami.
An earthquake measuring 9 on the Richter scale struck west of Sumatra on 26 December, causing a series of tsunami around the Indian Ocean area believed to have left more than 80,000 dead in some 10 different countries.
Wireless Communications Association International (WCAI) yesterday announced organisational efforts within the wireless broadband industry to help victims of the disaster.
A 13 January meeting at the group's annual International Symposium and Business Expo in the US would foster industry efforts on immediate disaster relief, both monetary and in equipment for aid providers, the WCAI said.
Industry leaders would also organise a task force to raise money and to coordinate equipment donations for effective emergency deployment.
Long term, the task force planned infrastructure advisory services for the region, building upon ongoing work within WCAI's Wireless Broadband Public Safety Task Force, the association said.
It was convening bi-weekly conference calls and preparing a Best Practices guide helping "first responders" to the emergency increase their capabilities for challenges ranging from emergency warnings to critical post-event communications, the WCAI said.
"The Embassy of Sri Lanka looks forward to working with WCAI and its member companies on this critical initiative, which will support relief efforts and have a long-term impact on rehabilitation of the areas devastated by this natural disaster," said Devinda Subasinghe, Sri Lanka's US Ambassador in a statement.
Sri Lanka was one of the nations badly affected by the series of giant waves that followed the earthquake.
"The government of Sri Lanka will be examining the capabilities of wireless companies, both with gratitude and with understanding of our long-term infrastructure needs," Subasinghe said.
More than 23,000 -- including foreign tourists -- were killed in Sri Lanka and 1.5 million left homeless.
Some 45,000 so far have been reported dead in Indonesia.