When companies create disaster recovery plans for their data centers, they think of huge breaches, equipment failures, or natural disasters, such as a wildfire, hurricane, or blizzard. However, the disaster that may cripple their technology systems might be a common side effect of a traumatic event: a power outage.
Recently, the power grids in Texas and California have experienced major outages due to weather events. If an outage affects the power grid in your area, it could shut down your data center, possibly for an extended period.
As the climate becomes more volatile, companies must rethink their approach to disaster recovery to avoid costly and damaging downtime after a power outage.
Pay Attention to the Warning Signs
The power grid outages experienced in Texas and California are warning signs that your business will likely experience unplanned and extended downtime in the near future. In the past few years, both states have endured extreme cold and heat that have put a strain on the grid, causing major utilities to enact safety measures and triggering blackouts.
In July 2022, to avoid rolling blackouts after temperatures topped 100 degrees, Texas had to activate emergency safety measures by asking citizens to limit their power use. In December of the same year, concerns were raised when temperatures plunged to arctic lows, increasing peak energy demand to alarming levels and causing thousands of outages.
In September 2022, when temperatures soared, California issued a flex alert, cautioning citizens to limit energy use during peak energy use periods. When demand reached unprecedented levels, some utilities accidentally cut power to their customers. Wildfires have also forced California utilities to cut power to prevent sparks from spreading fire.
At the other extreme, freak winter storms in California caused more than 400,000 customers to lose power, some for several days, in the beginning of 2023.
Excessive use of air conditioning and heating systems during a heat wave or cold snap can cause an outage. Snow, ice, winds, and wildfires can also knock out power lines and even entire power plants. The lack of resilience in your state’s power grid can have dire consequences for your company.
Why Worry About the Power Grid?
A potentially disastrous consequence of these power outages is unplanned downtime at your company’s data center. Data centers rely on power to run servers and keep them cool. When servers shut down because of a power outage, your data could be lost or compromised. The servers themselves could be damaged.
Your company should have uninterrupted power supply (UPS) appliances to provide energy for the short term after an outage. However, some outages can last for long periods of time.
Power grid outages, like other types of outages, can cause reputational damage to your company. Customers want your company to be always available to them. If your company goes dark for an extended period, your clients may become impatient, lose trust in you, and turn to competitors for products and services.
How Disaster Recovery as a Service Can Help
When your company experiences a power outage, your hands are tied. Any on-premises backup files or tools are rendered useless. If the outage is widespread, a secondary data center in the same area may also lose power. Your organization needs to rely on a third party to recover your information and get your systems up and running again.
With disaster recovery as a service, a managed service provider (MSP) maintains a remote data center and network environment that your company can turn to after a shutdown. The MSP will replicate data and monitor your systems so it will be aware when a traumatic incident occurs and can step in to restore systems.
The right MSP will develop and test a disaster recovery plan that is reliable and allows your company to seamlessly recover even after a complete loss of power to the data center.
Keeping Your Data Center Running
For companies in Texas and California, it’s only a matter of time before you experience a power outage that cripples your data center. These states need to work on improving the resiliency of their power grids. In the meantime, your organization should prepare by partnering with an MSP for disaster recovery.
Pegasus Technology Solutions offers disaster recovery as a service to companies in the Dallas Fort Worth area and beyond as part of our Managed IT Services. We will manage your company’s disaster recovery environment, including monitoring of the replication processes, the availability of the remote site hardware, and appropriate network infrastructure and network links.
Is your company prepared for a power outage? Ask for a proposal from Pegasus for disaster recovery as a service.