OGWEN VALLEY MOUNTAIN RESCUE.
Ogwen Valley Mountain Rescue Organisation is one of the busiest mountain rescue teams in the UK. Situated at Capel Curig, in the Snowdonia National Park, they provide a 24-hour service, every day of the year, assisting the Police and Ambulance services with rough terrain search and rescue in the Northern Snowdonia area.
As part of fulfilling their services the team are required to update live incident logs, access online team management systems, casualty location software and to update team member positions while on incident. OVMRO also publishes real-time weather information to assist the emergency services and also members of the public. Without a reliable and fast internet connection, delivering these invaluable services is very difficult.
Up until recently OVMRO struggled with a land line based broadband connection, but the service was extremely poor, and the team report that for many weeks they had no internet access at all. Read here how Ormesat installed a new Tooway Satellite Service, enabling the rescue team to work unimpeded by poor connectivity.
Paul Wixey writes: Just a quick note to say thank you for the great job you did installing and setting up the satellite broadband dish and equipment the Monday before Christmas. How you and Steve managed to keep so cheerful in the howling wind and rain I shall never know. You were quick to respond to all our enquiries and once the Assembly had agreed the funding, the installation was carried out very promptly. The Tooway system works really well and the days of waiting all day for files to download are now banished to distant memory. Not only has it helped us both with working from home but we can now enjoy things like iPlayer. What has surprised us both is that even in really poor weather conditions, when the Sky TV service glitches and freezes the Tooway just keeps going.
PETER IN RURAL WALES.
Peter lives 1000ft up a Welsh mountain and over 4 miles from the nearest BT exchange. He had previously received a download speed of just 56Kps from his internet service which dropped dramatically when the firm supplying him was taken over. Peter spent 3 months arguing with both BT and the ISP in order to improve his internet speed, but found each were blaming one another and was even told he should ‘feel grateful’ that he received any kind of speed at all considering his location.
Peter, although not a prolific internet user and admittedly not very clued up about the market, went searching for alternatives and discovered ToowayDirect online. Read More Here
I was very pleased with the communication and quick delivery of the system. It was extremely easy to set up, dish took approx 45 mins to assemble but I wasn’t really rushing and just followed the instructions to ensure that everything was correct. To aid proper alignment to the satellite, I downloaded an “app” to my phone that told me the correct elevation and direction to point it in, once this was done, it was up and running in less than 15 minutes. I added my own secure wireless network to prevent cables running all over the place and allow access through phones, tablet and laptop computer.
Now that I have this fast internet connection in my caravan, I am able to use it more as I can get away earlier on a Friday and log on to handle any work queries when I’m away. Also, as we use it on a seasonal pitch all year round, even if the weather is bad, we can still access the internet and have something to do if we can’t get outside. My partner is disabled and she is often stuck inside, this now gives her access to the outside world.
This July we installed a second Tooway system for The Snowdonia National Park at their new Warden’s office and visitor centre which has just opened beside Llyn Ogwen. This new facility will include a café, interpretation room, toilets and offices for the wardens. With over 300,000 visitors coming to the area each year the new building aims to provide visitors with information about the area and serve as a base for the warden service who look after the Ogwen Valley.
Installation of the system was challenging, as you see from the photo the building is overlooked by the cliff behind the property making it impossible to site the dish on the building. The only viable option therefore was to ground mount the dish across the road some eighty metres from the Centre. This posed a number of issues which needed to be addressed; firstly the advised limit of cabling for the Tooway system is about thirty metres, and we realised that the cable run was nearer ninety meteres in total! Also the dish would be in plain view to the public within an area of outstanding natural beauty. With our help the staff at the Park designed and built the cage which you see in the photo. The front of the cage has a thick perspex semi-transparent canopy, the dish itself was also painted to blend in better with the background. This cage addresses two main issues; it makes the dish significantly less obtrusive and deals with the issue of public safety. For the extended cable run we tested a higher specification armoured cable on an existing Tooway system to see if there was any loss in sgnal quality before actually installing the cable underground between the Centre and the dish.
Well I’m happy to say that the Tooway system is working like a dream delivering a download speed of 20 Mbps. It was a lot of extra effort but totally worthwhile. I’d like to wish the SNP the best of luck with their fabulous new visitor’s centre, and thank Nia and Dylan of the SNP for all their help on this project.