Case Study – Maui Wildfires and Rajant Kinetic Mesh

The Maui wildfires destroyed parts of the island of Maui in the U.S. state of Hawaii in the early days of August 2023. The historic resort town of Lahaina, located on Maui’s western peninsula, was most hit by the flames, which broke out on August 8. Most of the town was reduced to ash and wreckage.

The Lahaina wildfire was one of the deadliest on record, with 98 people dying from smoke and fire. The fire either damaged or destroyed about 3,000 structures. To escape the fast-moving fire, many residents jumped into the sea to escape the flames.

Many drowned in the process. Nine police officers and 18 firefighters from Lahaina lost their homes while trying to serve their community. The worst version of a “perfect storm” caused the entirety of West Maui to lose power, water, and internet, resulting in grocery stores closing once their stock was sold. Many neighborhoods and communities that didn’t burn suffered from a lack of utilities/food.

The Challenge

Wireless providers scrambled to restore service and fix theirdamaged network equipment in the following days and weeks, much of Maui was cut off from the rest of the world, withconcerned family and friends unable to connect with loved ones in the fire-ravaged region.

The Solution

The Rajant LX5-2255C BreadCrumb was the obvious choice for this situation.Wireless mesh networking creates self-sustaining connectivity, even when some nodes are lost or damaged. It ensures that first responders have moredependable communication channels during disasters, enabling them to coordinate their efforts effectively when most needed.

The Results

SITECH’s engineers, equipped with Rajant Kinetic Mesh wireless networking, recognized the gaps in communication coverage at a time when residents and frontline responders needed Wi-Fi most. The successfully implemented a ruggedized, high-speed wireless solution utilizing BreadCrumb radios to provide much-needed connectivity to a region reeling from massive communication failures. SITECH and Rajant helped to reconnect a region devastated by fire.

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