Despite what many might think it does actually rain in the red centre and when it does the results can often be devastating. This was the case recently when Alice Springs-based broadcaster was flooded. Such was the damage that Imparja’s broadcast playout partner, MediaHub Australia, had to step in with a disaster recovery initiative to keep the broadcaster on air.
MediaHub CEO Alan Sweeney explained, “Imparja’s sensitive television scheduling systems were extensively damaged by localised flooding in Alice Springs causing an inability to provide the programming schedules to us, their broadcast playout facility partner, based in Sydney.
“Fortunately we are prepared for any such event and stepped in to keep things running.”
The extreme weather event caused extensive flooding which in turn affected network connectivity and had a knock-on effect on the File Transfer Protocol systems that provide the vital link for the provision of data between Imparja and MediaHub.
Sweeney continued, “The team at Imparja really stepped up but due to the flooding were unable to provide the programming schedules that, once processed at MediaHub, enable the transmission of their signal to over one million resident viewers via an extensive broadcast footprint of over 3.6 million square kilometres spanning six states and territories.
“To rectify this MediaHub Australia utilised existing past programming schedules and reformatted and recreated them for playout for the duration of Imparja’s technical emergency. This meant no loss of broadcast or air time.”
As a result of MediaHub’s intervention what is normally a highly automated system was turned into a manually managed project with a finite window in which the scheduling operation could be completed successfully. Processes were put in place to build the required schedules, incorporating both automated and human data entry.
Alan Sweeney concluded, “This was a real rescue and recovery mission.
“Staff at MediaHub Australia and at Imparja worked extremely well together to ensure the continuous transmission of the Imparja Television service and as a result of MediaHub staff’s technical proficiency and agility, Imparja TV’s transmission to its viewership was seamless and unaffected even with their facilities being largely inoperative due to extensive flooding.
“This meant that during a time of hardship for many people affected by the severe weather, important and vital regional news was broadcast as per normal.”