FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
COEUR D’ALENE (November 18, 2015)
From Ice Storm 1996 to “Windstorm 2015”
Local Planning, Commitment to Customers, Backup Measures, and
Strong Infrastructure Can Carry the Day
A FIERCE STORM BLOWS IN
Sustained gale force winds up to 70 miles an hour throughout the Inland Northwest didn’t make a dent in the new Intermax Networks Data Center and Headquarters last night. Our network’s Head-End equipment, all hosted customer servers, and our extensive fiber backbone infrastructure were all unaffected when “Windstorm 2015” came blowing through. Here’s some background as to why that happened.
Nineteen years ago, almost to the day, the Inland Northwest endured a brutal weather snap known as “Ice Storm”. As the NOAA weather history puts it:
“It began as just another drizzly day in Spokane, Washington, but by its end, November 19, 1996, produced one of the region’s worst ice storms in 60 years. Trees came crashing down everywhere under the immense weight of the ice. The mayor of Spokane declared a state of emergency as over half the city’s residents lost electricity—their worst power outage in 108 years. Three days after the storm, 100,000 people in the surrounding county were without power, and six days after the storm, 20,000 were still without power. Some area residents were without electricity for up to two weeks following the record-breaking storm. Throughout the devastating ice storm and its aftermath, four people lost their lives in and around Spokane and Kootenai counties, and total damages were estimated at over $22 million in 1996 dollars—$33 million in 2013 dollars. This ice storm remains one of the most severe on record for the area.”[i]
A few years later in response to that, Verizon designed a Data Center in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho to service national clients regardless of weather, and to withstand a similar or worse weather event like Ice Storm in the future. They had hundreds of employees in the facility for more than a decade.
Fast forward to 2015 and the company that bought Verizon moved those related jobs elsewhere, leaving the building and the significant investment in physical infrastructure intact but unused.
ENTER INTERMAX NETWORKS
Intermax has been building the largest independent internet and telecommunications business in North Idaho. Growth has been strong enough that in 2014 we went looking for new ways to accommodate the number of new employees and facilities needed. Intermax has gone from 3 employees in 2007 to 34 today, with the number of customers growing almost tenfold in that same time.
Intermax decided to capitalize on the assets in that building, constructed as it was to withstand another Ice Storm. They leveraged the infrastructure, remodeled the office space for new purposes, and converted it into a modern, IP-based Data Center capable of serving customers throughout North Idaho and the Inland Northwest. The industrial-grade 750-kw Diesel Generator, the redundant Commercial Air Conditioning units, the large-scale power-conditioning battery backups and 24/7 monitoring of the site make it perhaps North Idaho’s newest, most hardened and most reliable publicly available Data Center.
That facility became the new Intermax Headquarters and Data Center on Mineral Drive in Coeur d’Alene in October of this year.
THE PLAN GETS AN EARLY TEST
As the windstorm blew through November 17, 2015 it was eerie to drive around Coeur d’Alene and Hayden to see so many commercial businesses blackened and closed with only emergency lights running in the parking lots. Our immediate neighbors all around the area (Best Buy, Target, Silver Lake Mall,) and up and down I-95 were pitched into darkness for hours while Intermax had lights, heat, power, and an uninterrupted flow of internet access.
In the secure and controlled Intermax Data Center, network backbone and server monitoring confirmed throughout the storm that no links were severed for customers hosting their servers and critical information at Intermax. In short, the Data Center ran flawlessly as it was designed to do.
RESTORATION AND FUTURE PLANNING
As the power is being restored around the region Intermax is helping current customers work through their local-power generated issues at their locations, while those customers who entrust their connectivity to Intermax’s fiber network and the Data Center have stayed up and running throughout.
Intermax has invested in building a team of professionals across the technology and telecommunications perspective to truly become a one-stop shop for business continuity in the Inland Northwest.
Commercial clients who use the Intermax local cloud, the extensive fiber network, our commercial grade VOIP switch, Data Center storage, and our IT network management services are relying on us to deliver a reliable, outsourced and bullet-proof experience.
On November 17, 2015, Intermax’s brand new Data Center passed that test with flying colors.
For more information:
Mike Kennedy, President, Intermax Networks
208-661-7337 (call or text) 208-762-8065, ext. 111 (office)
Internet. Phones. Fiber. Trust Intermax.
Intermax Networks has built the largest independent fiber and private microwave data network in North Idaho. We provide internet, digital phone, transport connections, and Point-to-Point circuits connecting North Idaho to places all across Idaho and the Northwest. Our main office is in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho with offices in Sandpoint and Bonners Ferry serving Kootenai, Bonner, Boundary, and Spokane Counties.
Intermax supplies more than 2,500 customers with service on a monthly basis, from individual residences to major infrastructure connections for business, government, health care and schools. Our network includes direct Intermax fiber connections to: Tierpoint in Liberty Lake, Downtown Spokane (U.S. Bank), Seattle (The Westin Fiber Hub) and other POPs around the Inland Northwest.
With a staff of nearly 30 people across three offices in North Idaho Intermax is committed to our community. We are owned and managed by North Idaho people. We have no conflicting objectives in California or Virginia. We don’t have a corporate parent expecting us to send our earnings to New York or be small outposts for large corporate mergers.
Our focus is on superior broadband service to business and residents in North Idaho and we are willing to invest what it takes to accomplish that.
Here is a small representative sampling of Intermax's corporate customers:
- Qualfon/Center Partners
- Kootenai Health
- Hagadone Hospitality
- Northwest Specialty Hospital
- SQM Group
- Bonner County Daily Bee
- Advanced Benefits
- Dickinson Insurance
- Post Falls School District
- The Salvation Army Kroc Corps Community Center
- Gozzer Ranch/Discovery Properties in Harrison
- Post Falls Landing
- Falls Park Apartments