Why JetBlue Airways had to move its backup operations center

Did you know JetBlue Airways learned an important lesson about its operation in October 2012 when Hurricane Sandy hit New York?

At the time, JetBlue's backup operations center was in a hangar New York airport, not all that far from the primary center at the airline's headquarters. 

"Hurricane Sandy was a big wakeup call for us," Penny Neferis, JetBlue's director business continuity and emergency response, said at a recent airline industry conference. "It clearly became obvious that [a nearby airport] was not the right place to have a backup center."

As you might expect, JetBlue built another backup center. Airlines typically don't like it when travelers know where the backup building is, so I won't mention it here. But Neferis stressed that is ..."on a different power grid [with] different connectivity and a different phone system."

Airline employees should have no trouble running the carrier if the operations center at headquarters fails. "Everything is redundant," Neferis said.