Bakcell announced today that in the late evening hours of June 27, one of its offices was struck by fire. The Bakcell office located at the address 131 Hasan Aliyev Str. was evacuated immediately and there were no casualties. Yigit Berktas, Bakcell CTO said "Our procedures worked as they should, as soon as the fire was spotted Security was informed and the Fire Services called. All personnel, around 60 employees were evacuated within minutes, fire evacuation plans worked flawlessly to ensure that no one was hurt". The fire was confined to the second floor of building and the Fire Services were on site in minutes. The fire was brought under control quickly; the process of cleaning up now begins. As a result around 255 sq.m. of office space area has been damaged by fire, this housed the Company’s Customer Call Center which has been relocated to a backup office building using plans and procedures put in place for just such an eventuality.
Backell customers have been unaffected as the fire was localized to office space and had no impact on network equipment, so major telecommunications equipment housed at the site was fully operational throughout and has been protected as planned. Bakcell's Customer Service agents were briefly unavailable as they relocated to the alternate site. Happily this event coincided with quietest time of the day for calls to the Call Centre so customers’ enquiries were handled through Bakcell's IVR and no backlog of calls was present once full Customer Services were resumed around 70 minutes later.
Preliminary investigation points to an electrical fire, a full investigation is underway. Richard Shearer, Bakcell CEO said "Despite the fact of being upset by the fire and the damage I am extremely satisfied that our internal procedures worked as well as they did and no one was hurt. Our customers and network were unaffected and our procedures to bring the back-up Call Centre online were executed by the team without fuss or drama. Everyone executed their responsibilities well. I'd like to thank the Fire Services for their prompt reaction and professionalism to ensure the fire remained under control and was extinguished quickly. Additionally I would like to commend Bakcell's staff for their focus and professionalism during this emergency and for always keeping our customers in mind in getting Customer Services back on air so quickly. The process of cleaning up begins today and Bakcell remains focused on ensuring its customers continue to have the best communications services in Azerbaijan".