Calif. fires prompt rerouting of NMCI help desk calls

For the second time in as many months, a natural disaster forced Navy-Marine Corps Intranet officials to route services to a backup facility.

The wildfires that continue to ravage southern California led NMCI contractor EDS Corp. to temporarily transfer help desk services in San Diego to the Norfolk, Va., help desk. The San Diego facility went offline for 24 hours beginning early yesterday morning, EDS spokesman Kevin Clarke said.

San Diego help desk employees were sent home for the day. 'The mayor in San Diego encouraged us to keep employees home and keep the roads free for the fire trucks,' Clarke said.

In late September, Hurricane Isabel pounded the Hampton Roads, Va., area, and forced EDS to route services at the Norfolk Help Desk and Global Network Operations Center to other NMCI facilities. The Navy lost connectivity at 32 sites scattered from North Carolina to Maryland. Flooding and power losses caused the loss in connectivity, but there were no gaps in service to users elsewhere.

The NMCI Web site warns users that because of the wildfires and the transfer of help desk operations, they could experience response delays. The Norfolk help desk increased its staff to handle West Coast trouble calls, NMCI officials said.

So far, Clarke said, there have been no delays and there are no known interruptions in NMCI connectivity, although the wildfires did affect operations at the Marine Corps Air Station at Miramar in San Diego.

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