WASHINGTON, March 9, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- IEEE-USA will unveil its communications and power disaster relief vehicle to the public at the Marriott Norfolk (Va.) Waterside Hotel on Saturday 2 April from 1 to 3 p.m.
The "Mobile Outreach VEhicle" – MOVE – will travel to communities hit hard by natural disasters and infrastructure failures to provide rechargeable power banks, real-time survivor information and Wi-Fi until regular electricity and data services can be restored.
IEEE-member engineers and high-tech professionals will begin volunteer training during IEEE Region 3's SoutheastCon 2016 in Norfolk, Va., 30 March to 3 April.
"We're excited to take delivery of the vehicle," former Region 3 Director and MOVE champion Mary Ellen Randall said. "Our volunteers are looking forward to sharing their technical expertise during times of chaos and uncertainty."
The truck is the centerpiece of IEEE-USA's MOVE Community Outreach program, which includes a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) education component. When not deployed to a disaster zone, the vehicle will travel to places such as schools, libraries, fairs and sporting events to raise awareness about the social impact advanced technologies can have.
The MOVE truck is equipped to provide disaster victims with the ability to charge their cell phones and gain Internet access.
"They'll be able to at least communicate with loved ones, and they won't have all these feelings of isolation and loneliness," Randall said during a recent interview with Colonel Mason of the ScienceNews Radio Network. "They'll know whether they should go or stay, things they felt were important to their safety."
The American Red Cross, Eastern North Carolina Region is partnering with IEEE-USA on the program.
"Supporting the communication, power and information needs of a community after a major disaster is vital to providing a path to recovery," said Barry Porter, regional chief executive officer of the American Red Cross in Raleigh, N.C.
IEEE SoutheastCon 2016 is the annual Region 3 technical, professional and student conference. Electrical and computer engineering professionals, faculty and students assemble to share the latest information through technical sessions, tutorials and exhibits.
SoutheastCon is sponsored by IEEE Region 3 and the IEEE Hampton Roads Section, in cooperation with Old Dominion University, Norfolk State University and Christopher Newport University.
IEEE-USA serves the public good and promotes the careers and public policy interests of nearly 200,000 engineering, computing and technology professionals who are U.S. members of IEEE.