Verizon Works to Bring Telephone, Data Service Back to Normal in Northeast New York

NEW YORK - Verizon today continued its service restoration efforts in the northeastern part of New York state, the area hardest hit by last Friday's ice storm.

Over this past weekend, a number of Verizon's central switching offices and remote terminals in the northeast part of the state were operating on battery backup power, since commercial power was out.  As of today, only five remote terminals remain on backup generators, providing service to about 1,000 Verizon customers.  The generators will remain in place and working until commercial power is restored. 

All Verizon central offices - which perform the essential functions of supplying dial tone and routing calls and data transmissions for customers - are equipped with backup batteries and generators that kick in automatically if the electrical power supply is interrupted.  In addition, Verizon uses portable generators in locations where commercial power is unavailable.

In an area from mid-Hudson up to the Canadian border, Verizon is currently is working on some 3,200 repair reports.  They cover lines that are completely out of service, as well as service-affecting situations such as static on the line, a downed drop wire or some other significant service impact.  More than 400 service technicians are working on repairs in the field.  Hundreds more are supporting those field forces at service bureaus, repair desks and call switching facilities.

The areas where most of the work is concentrated are Hudson, Latham, Schenectady, Troy and Fallsburg.

As part of the plan to restore service to its customers as quickly as possible, Verizon has brought in more than 200 service technicians from other parts of the state and from other departments to assist the local teams with repairs and other tasks such as pole replacement, installing new drop wires and splicing new cable.

In addition, and as is standard practice in natural emergencies such as this storm, the company has reassigned technical forces from other construction and planned projects to the more critical tasks of repairs for homes and businesses.

While the storm has caused damaging ice conditions in this region, other areas of the state received torrential rains, and as a result, Verizon is working on an increased number of repair reports in those areas as well.

"All of our forces are focused on getting service fully restored to our customers," said Tracey Edwards, regional vice president for Verizon's telecom operations.  "Our employees are working with the local power company to identify areas where power has been restored and where it is safe for us to enter an area and begin our work."

As always, Verizon reminds customers to contact the company and report any remaining service issues.  Residential customers can call 518-890-6611, and small business customers can call 518-890-7711.

Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers.  Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving nearly 69 million customers nationwide.  Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network.  A Dow 30 company, Verizon employs a diverse workforce of more than 228,600 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of $93.5 billion.  For more information, visit www.verizon.com.