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[November 02, 2012]
Hurricane Sandy Service Update: Verizon's Restoral Progress Continues
BASKING RIDGE, N.J., Nov. 2, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Verizon's network continues to function well in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, as tens of thousands of Verizon engineers, technicians and customer-service employees continue to bring back voice and data communications, Internet and TV service to consumers, business and government clients.
Restoring Service and Keeping Consumers Charged and Connected: Verizon continues to work round-the-clock to restore backup power to several critical, hard-hit switching facilities in lower Manhattan and Queens. Four critical flood-damaged facilities in lower Manhattan and one on Long Island, including the company's headquarters and major communications hub at 140 West St., have been restored but are operating on backup power. These facilities provide phone, Internet and TV services for consumers and small businesses in the area, as well as sophisticated cloud and data communications for financial services, other enterprises and government agencies.
Many Verizon technicians are working 12-hour shifts round-the-clock to restore services in the hardest-hit areas. The company estimates that some areas should be at normal operational levels within a few days, while it may take up to two weeks to bring back services in some of the hardest-hit areas due to extended commercial power loss. For safety reasons, Verizon construction crews must first wait on power company cables to be placed before replacing Verizon facilities. Verizon's restoration work on streets with downed lines will begin immediately after power lines are replaced.
The company will redeploy employees and other resources to New Jersey and the New York metro area as it completes restoration in less-affected parts of the region.
Many Verizon FiOS and Verizon Wireless stores in the affected region are open to people who need to charge their wireless devices. Several Verizon Wireless mobile stores-on-wheels that have been moved into the hard-hit New Jersey and New York areas are also providing this service.
Fuel, Power Continue to Weigh on Efforts: The availability of fuel is a concern. The company's command center is working with fuel suppliers and federal, state and local government officials to secure the fuel essential to keep generators and service vehicles running so Internet access and voice and data communications can continue to flow.
Verizon also is coordinating with commercial power companies and local authorities to resolve restoral challenges caused by downed power lines, trees and other debris; closed roads; persistently high water; and several feet of snow in some areas of the region affected by Sandy.
Supporting Emergency Responders: Emergency communications such as 911 service have fared well. Verizon has been in close contact with 911 center directors to keep them updated and to respond quickly to any issues they have encountered.
Verizon has deployed vehicles from its disaster recovery fleet to assist the New York Police Department at locations in Queens and Staten Island, and the Long Beach city government on Long Island. The company is considering further deployments in the New Jersey/New York metro area. (Click here to view Verizon's disaster recovery fleet.) Supporting American Red Cross and Relief Efforts: As part of continuing efforts to support Hurricane Sandy recovery, the Verizon Foundation has announced it will match customer text-to-donate contributions to American Red Cross relief efforts up to $1 million. Customers can make a $10 donation by texting REDCROSS to 90999. Those who would like to give more can donate up to $50 via text. For those contributing, text messaging fees will be waived and 100 percent of each donation goes directly to the Red Cross. Verizon Wireless customers who pay monthly bills will see their donations on the next regular monthly bill. For customers using the company's prepaid services, donations will be taken from customers' prepaid balances.
The Verizon Foundation also will donate $100,000 to relief agencies in New Jersey and $100,000 to relief agencies New York. In addition, the foundation is providing a 2:1 match of employee donations to the Red Cross and the Salvation Army. In other words, for every dollar a Verizon employee donates, the foundation will match $2.
Customers can contact Verizon online at www.verizon.com/outage to report any wireline service-related issues; or call 1-800-VERIZON (1-800-837-4966). Please note that hold times will be longer than normal due to higher calling volumes.
For more information on Verizon Wireless efforts related to Hurricane Sandy, visit the Emergency Information Center.
Verizon Enterprise Solutions updates are available at www.verizonbusiness.com/info/hurricane.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE, Nasdaq: VZ), headquartered in New York, is a global leader in delivering broadband and other wireless and wireline communications services to consumer, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, with nearly 96 million retail customers nationwide. Verizon also provides converged communications, information and entertainment services over America's most advanced fiber-optic network, and delivers integrated business solutions to customers in more than 150 countries, including all of the Fortune 500. A Dow 30 company with $111 billion in 2011 revenues, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of 184,500. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
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