BASKING RIDGE, NJ — With weather forecasters predicting a series of especially violent hurricanes heading for the United States this month, Verizon Wireless advises customers who live on the East Coast or who are traveling to the East during hurricane season to make sure they have a personal emergency communications plan ready to go. The builder and operator of the nation’s most reliable wireless network has made extensive investments and preparations for the 2008 hurricane season to ensure its network is ready to serve customers before, during and after severe weather.
Verizon Wireless offers wireless customers the following safety tips:
- Keep wireless phone batteries fully charged – in case local power is lost – well before warnings are issued.
- Have additional charged batteries and car-charger adapters available for back-up power.
- Keep phones, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry and easily accessible location.
- Maintain a list of emergency phone numbers and program them into your phone.
- Forward home phone calls to your wireless number if you will be away from home.
- Limit non-emergency calls and use brief text messages rather than voice calls to conserve battery power and free-up wireless networks for emergency agencies and operations. Learn how to text message if you’re not a regular user of the service.
- Check weather and news reports available on wireless phones with Internet access and other news and information applications when power is out.
For those who are impacted by severe weather and need to evacuate or are unable to travel and stuck in an airport, customers can use Verizon Wireless’ services to stay connected and informed including:
- BroadbandAccess: Verizon Wireless’ premier high-speed data service gives customers a fast, reliable resource to help them stay in touch while away from home. Based on CDMA 1x Evolution-Data Optimized (EV-DO) Revision A (Rev. A) technology, BroadbandAccess provides a high-speed connection for customers to access the Internet, e-mail and other important information.
- Mobile Email: With Mobile Email, customers can get their e-mail wherever they are without their PCs and stay connected on select Get It Now®-enabled phones.
- Mobile Web: Mobile Web gives customers access to breaking news, weather and personal banking information.
Verizon Wireless works year-round to prepare for hurricanes and other disasters so customers can rely on the company’s network when they need it the most. Highlights of Verizon Wireless’ hurricane preparation and network enhancements include:
- More than 200 business continuity/disaster recovery plans in place, covering all of the company’s critical business functions, to help keep customers connected and operating during any kind of emergency. The Verizon Wireless business continuity team conducts emergency drills throughout the year to increase the company’s response capabilities.
- New 35-foot $150,000 Disaster Response Trailers, which can be used as temporary customer service locations in areas impacted by a disaster.
- Hundreds of new digital cell sites, which have been constructed during the past year. Roughly 85 percent have their own on-site generators and new expanded fuel tanks to extend their power-generating capacity.
- A fleet of Cells on Wheels (COWs) and Cells on Light Trucks (COLTs), and Generators on Trailers (GOaTs) that can be rolled into hard-hit locations or areas that need extra network capacity.
- Pre-arranged fuel delivery to mobile units and generators to keep the network operating at full strength – even if power is lost for an extended period of time.
These network enhancements are part of Verizon Wireless’ continued network investment strategy to increase the coverage and capacity of its national network and add new services. Since the company was formed, Verizon Wireless has invested more than $45 billion, including $6.5 billion in 2007 to enhance its network.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation’s most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 68.7 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 70,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). For more information, go to: www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.