Telephone Service Upgrade Planned for Casco Bay Islands

Telephone Service Upgrade Planned for Casco
Bay Islands

Fiber Optic Transmission Line to Improve Service

September 23, 1998


Peter Reilly,

PORTLAND, Maine -- Bell Atlantic customers on six Casco Bay islands
will soon have their telephone calls to the mainland carried over state-of-
the-art fiber optic transmission lines.

Work is under way to upgrade service for calls between the Bell Atlantic
switching offices located on Peaks Island and on Forest Avenue in
Portland. The current digital microwave link has experienced intermittent
service disruptions in the past when large cruise ships anchored in
Portland Harbor in direct line with the microwave path.

Bell Atlantic has advanced a planned service upgrade in order to have the
new fiber optic link to the islands operational prior to the Oct. 13 Portland
visit of the QE 2.

Bell Atlantic will place more than three miles of fiber optic cable to
connect its two switching offices, replacing the current digital microwave
link. The underwater placement of the submarine fiber optic cable in
Casco Bay is scheduled to be completed early tomorrow afternoon, when
the barge transporting the 12-foot diameter cable wheel reaches East End
Beach in Portland.

The Peaks Island office provides telecommunications services to some
1,500 Bell Atlantic customers located on Peaks Island, Cliff Island,
Cushings Island, Long Island, Little Diamond Island, and Great Diamond

Bell Atlantic is at the forefront of the new communications and
information industry. With more than 41 million telephone access lines
and more than seven million wireless customers worldwide, Bell Atlantic
companies are premier providers of advanced wireline voice and data
services, market leaders in wireless services and the world's largest
publishers of directory information. Bell Atlantic companies are also
among the world's largest investors in high-growth global
communications markets, with operations and investments in 23 countries.