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Nick Tusa relies on being connected to operate his business. He runs Tusa Consulting Services, a national public safety communications firm, from an office on his 10-acre property in Covington, LA. The office is the central hub of a network of consultants that stretches across the US designing radio communication systems for local and state fire and police departments.
Reliable Internet communication is essential for keeping Tusa in touch with clients and his consultants in Florida, Kansas City, Atlanta, Nashville, and Lancaster. He also needs it for access to the firm’s technology library and customer files, which are stored at two secure, remote locations.
Long Internet outages would be a serious handicap for Tusa Consulting, which must be able to quickly contact clients during natural disasters and other emergencies. His own location, however, can be a disadvantage. Covington is located 40 miles north of New Orleans, which puts Tusa in one of the world’s most active hurricane zones. When he was researching Internet services, durability and reliability weighed heavily in his consideration.
Tusa describes his area of Covington as “not well served by the local Internet or cable company.” When he learned HughesNet for Business service from Hughes was an option, he contacted people who had the service and liked it.
“When Hurricane Katrina hit, the flooding destroyed the underground cable and fiber equipment, and it took months to rebuild. The wired Internet services can be down for weeks. My business can’t tolerate that,” he said. “When there’s a problem in public safety, people expect a response immediately, 24/7, 365 days a year. A lot of our work is preplanned, but sometimes I have to push a vendor to correct a situation in the moment. I have customers up and down the Gulf Coast, from Western Louisiana into Florida. When a hurricane hits, our people have to be in the field to respond to issues. We need reliable Internet access.”
Though no communication system is completely disaster-resistant, living through Hurricane Katrina revealed to Tusa how vulnerable ground-based networks are to extended outages. Satellite Internet bypasses the groundbased infrastructure altogether. Turnaround time to restore service is usually much quicker compared to landline solutions.
“The upload and download speeds were significantly better than what I could get out here,” he said. “HughesNet also gives me an added measure of insurance. With HughesNet, most of the time I can be back in business in as little as a few hours after a storm. It’s been so reliable that sometimes I forget it’s there because I never have to do anything to it.”
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