Hurricane Michael network updates

October 21, 3:00 PM – Next update available here and from @KateHarrisJay on Twitter

 

Hurricane Network Hero

Two members of Verizon's vendor repair and restoration team evaluate a fresh fiber cut after having replaced the cable the day prior.

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Highlights:

  • Service restored to much of Panama City including a long-term temporary tower in Callaway
  • Repairs to a critical fiber ring have restored important redundancy into the fiber infrastructure of the network
  • Verizon volunteers continue to staff community assets for those needing devices charged, internet access and the ability to make phone calls to loved ones and needed resources

Network update:

Continuing our urgent 24x7 recovery and repair work, good progress was made yesterday and overnight to restore service to Bay County residents.  Service was restored to several areas, including:

  • The commercial area along West 23rd Street, and residential communities of Bay View Heights, Meadowbrook Estates, Sherwood, Summerford, King’s Ranch and surrounding area, and a residential area being developed on the old airport property.
  • The residential community of East Callaway Heights and Highway 22 between Callaway and Wewahitchka.
  • The residential and commercial communities in the northeast part of Panama City along Highway 231, Sherman Avenue and NE Avenue including Bay Haven Charter Academy, Highland City, Highland Park, Highland Heights, Highland Elementary School, and surrounding areas.

A portable cell site (CoLT/Cell on Light Truck) with fiber backhaul was deployed to restore service to the Callaway community after the storm destroyed the tower there.  That CoLT will remain there until a new tower can be built.

An additional portable cell site was deployed to the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) to add capacity and reliability inside that command center for first responders and a portable cell site was deployed to Breakfast Point Academy to support FEMA operations at that location.

New fiber cuts occurred during power restoration and debris removal efforts yesterday that caused setbacks in progress.  Those cuts were repaired again and service was once more restored to areas covering Tyndall Air Force Base, the housing community at the base, Highway 98 between the base and Mexico Beach, and Silver Flag Training Site within the AFB.

Critical Fiber Ring Repaired Overnight

Our fiber crew partners were able to repair a critical fiber ring overnight which restored redundancy and resilience back into the fiber network.  Fiber is important because it carries data traffic from our cell sites to communication centers in our network that provide connectivity to other parts of the Florida panhandle and beyond. With our redundancy pathways restored, a single fiber cut will not interrupt services in the Panama City area.  Multiple fiber cuts, however, continue to be a risk to our communications services. 

Important: Avoiding Fiber Cuts, Here’s What You Can Do

For your safety and to help speed recovery efforts, we are requesting residents and recovery teams to help by using caution when working on power restoration and debris clearing efforts. If you are working near fiber cables, please be aware those lines are carrying traffic that supports first responders, wireless networks and life-saving communications.  If you need to work nearby one of these cables, please call 1-877-652-2321 for site coordination to ensure the communications for first responders conducting their mission critical work of search, rescue and recovery are available to them. 

Community and First Responder Support:

We continue to provide resources in several communities for those without service or power who need to reach loved ones and resources or simply need to charge their devices.

  • Our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd Street, is open from 10 am-5 pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections, providing additional charging stations inside. We also have pallets of water outside the store available for those in the community who need it
  • Two device charging stations at the shelter at Deane Bozeman High School in Panama City
  • Our Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Wal-mart North Tyndall Parkway location (near Tyndall Air Force Base)
  • A device charging station at the shelter at 2201 Long Avenue in Port Saint Joe in Gulf County
  • Our Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Marianna Walmart at 2255 FL-71 later today
  • Our Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Mexico Beach Baptist Church, open from 9 am-6 pm
  • Four charging stations at Parker Park in Mexico Beach

To support first responders we have the following assets in place:

  • Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations (charging stations, internet access) and satellite connectivity supporting the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC)
  • Gooseneck trailer, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter deployed with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center
  • Tactical Command Trailer on site to support the Panama City Police Department
  • A Mobile Command Center at Tyndall Air Force Base
  • Comfort/Relief Trailer at Harmon Base Camp in Mexico Beach supporting the National Guard Operations Center.
  • Gooseneck Trailer, Comfort Trailer and Accommodation Trailer at Parker Park supporting the Parker Park Fire Command Center in Mexico Beach

Recreational Vehicle and Trailer providing Wi-Fi connectivity at Parker Park for the Mexico Beach Fire Department


October 20, 12:00 PM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Highlights:

  • Significant progress made on service restoration throughout Bay County
  • New fiber cuts caused by ongoing power repair and restoration efforts continue to present new challenges
  • Expanded community assets in place to serve those who are without wireless service

Network Update:

In the last 24 hours our network teams have made tremendous progress in restoring service to several areas:

  • The residential communities around Sunny Hill, and Highway 77 in between Vicksburg and Highway 20 including Dean Bozeman School, Oak Park, and residential communities around Tank Pond, and Bream Pond.
  • The base and housing community at Tyndall Air Force Base.
  • The area covering Highway 98 between Tyndall AFB and Mexico Beach which also provides coverage to Silver Flag Training Site within the Tyndall AFB.
  • The residential communities in the west and northwest parts of Lynn Haven including North Harbor, Point Havenwood, North Shores, and others.
  • The commercial and residential communities between West 9th Street, 15th Street, West 23rd Street and Beck Avenue including Oakland Terrace, Hursts Replat, Oak Hill Plat, Crestview, Meadowbrook Estates, and others.
  • The northeast area of Bay County at the border with Calhoun County and the southern part of the town of Youngstown.

We also made great progress toward restoring multiple fiber pathways throughout a main fiber ring in Bay County (we refer to this as diversity) which is critical so that a single fiber cut does not interrupt services. 

Our Biggest Challenge: Ongoing Fiber Cuts

Despite all this progress, our network and fiber restoration/replacement teams continue to experience setbacks caused by ongoing, multiple new fiber cuts. We understand all teams in the Bay County area are working hard at restoration efforts and there is an extraordinary amount of activity happening to restore power. Unfortunately because of this activity, several new cuts in our fiber infrastructure caused previously restored services to go down again. These fiber cuts resulted in the loss of diversity (restoring multiple pathways in fiber for robustness and resiliency) we accomplished yesterday as well as service loss in key areas including the southern loop of Panama City (which we were able to recover again within a few hours) and Tyndall Air Force Base where hundreds of military members are returning today. We are working urgently to restore fiber lines and service to the base.

We are in communication with the power companies and state and local response teams with the goal of significantly reducing these ongoing fiber cuts to maintain the services we have restored and accelerate progress on restoring the handful of sites still out in Panama City and the single site still out of service in Gulf County at the southern tip of St. Joseph’s Bay.

Community and First Responder Support: 

New today:

Multiple resources have been deployed to Mexico Beach to support the community and first responders, including:

  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center (large truck with device charging stations, Internet access and ability to make phone calls) at Mexico City Baptist Church, open from 9am-6pm
  • 4 charging stations at Parker Park 
  • Comfort/Relief Trailer at Harmon Base Camp supporting the National Guard Operations Center
  • Gooseneck Trailer, Comfort Trailer and Accommodation Trailer at Parker Park supporting the Parker Park Fire Command Center
  • Recreational Vehicle and Trailer providing Wi-Fi connectivity for the local fire department 
  • Another Wireless Emergency Communications Center is headed to the area to be deployed in an area of need

For those without service or power who need to reach loved ones and resources or simply need to charge their devices, resources remain set up throughout the community to do that.

  • Our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections and additional charging stations inside. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations. 
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Insurance Village located near Sam's Club on 23rd St. in Panama City.
  • Two device charging stations at the shelter at Deane Bozeman High School in Panama City.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Walmart North Tyndall Parkway location (near Tyndall Air Force Base).
  • A device charging station at a shelter at 2201 Long Avenue in Port Saint Joe in Gulf County.
  • Our Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Marianna High School will be moved to the Marianna Wal-mart at 2255 FL-71 later today.
Fiber Cut

Close up of fiber cut.


October 19, 9:30 AM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Highlights:

  • Additional coverage restored in the northern part of Panama City.
  • Flying cell site to provide service from the sky in Callaway again today.
  • Community assets and Verizon volunteers remain in place to serve community members.

Network Update:

Network and fiber teams continued working throughout the night to restore connectivity to cell sites.  Our overnight crews were able to restore service to the commercial area along W. 23rd St, and the residential communities of Bay View Heights, Meadowbrook Estates, Sherwood, Summerford, King’s Ranch, and surrounding areas.  We also restored service to the residential and commercial communities in the southern part of Lynn Haven including Magnolia Meadows, Lynnwood Subdivision, Camryn’s Crossing, Belair Estates, and surrounding areas.

We deployed a mobile cell site with satellite backhaul at the Jackson County EOC in Marianna.

The flying cell site will take flight again today over Callaway providing LTE service from the sky.

Community and first responder support:

For those customers without service or power who need to reach loved ones and resources or simply need to charge their devices, we have resources set up throughout the community to do that.

  • Our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections and additional charging stations inside. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center (large truck with device charging stations, internet access and ability to make phone calls) is set up at Breakfast Pointe Academy in Panama City Beach at 601 Jackson Blvd.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Wal-Mart Tyndall Avenue location in Callaway, FL (near Tyndall Air Force Base).
  • A Wireless Emergency Communications Center is set up at Insurance Village located near Sam's Club on 23rd St. in Panama City.
  • Two device charging stations have been placed at the shelter at Dean Bozeman High School in Panama City.
  • We have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Road in Marianna, which is open from 9 am-6 pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections.

To support first responders we have the following assets in place:

  • Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains available and supporting the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC). 
  • A Gooseneck trailer, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter is deployed with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center
  • Tactical Command Trailer remains on-site to support the Panama City Police Department. 
  • The mobile command center remains on site at Tyndall Air Force Base.

OCTOBER 18, 9:00PM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

New Developments: 

  • Service restored in several areas including along North Bay, Lynn Haven and the eastern part of Panama City
  • Verizon donating $1M to support recovery efforts, doubling Red Cross donation to $500K, and donating $500,000 to the Florida Disaster Relief Fund
  • We are expanding our offer of three months of free monthly access to our customers to nine counties, up from two counties

Network Update

Network service was restored in several communities today:

  • The residential and commercial communities of SouthPort and the northwest part of Lynn Haven along the North Bay
  • The residential and commercial communities along Highway 390 in between Highway 231 and Lynn Haven including College Point, Hillcrest, College Wood, Brentwood Estates and businesses in Aberdeen Parkway, Aberdeen Loop and the Lynn Haven Sports Complex 
  • The eastern area of Panama City including Springfield and surrounding neighborhood
  • The residential and business communities along East 15th Street and South Tyndall Parkway including Pinnacle Pine Estates, Callaway Heights, Oak Woods Garden Cove and Wal-mart Supercenter

An additional portable cell site was deployed today at Tyndall Air Force Base, and our flying cell site provided service from the sky over the Callaway community.

A series of new fiber cuts – at least a dozen cases – caused by the tremendous recovery activities continued to create challenges for our fiber restoration and replacement teams today with a cut to a main hub impacting service in the recently restored Panama City Beach area. Our teams were able to quickly identify and repair the cut, bringing service back up in that area quickly. 

We ask all citizens and restoration personnel to be vigilant when working around wires. Out of caution, the best approach is to presume wires are carrying live critical communications or electricity.

Community Investment Update: Verizon ups donation total to $1 million

This afternoon, we announced we will be donating a total of $500,000 to the American Red Cross to support recovery efforts, adding $250,000 to our original pledge to support areas hardest hit by the hurricane. In addition, we are contributing $500,000 to the Florida Disaster Relief Fund, which is the state’s official private fund established to assist communities as they respond to and recover during times of emergency or disaster.

In addition to the donations, Verizon is also expanding its offer of three months of free monthly access to its customers in nine counties that were most heavily impacted by Hurricane Michael.

In addition to Bay and Gulf counties, every Verizon customer in Calhoun, Franklin, Holmes, Jackson, Liberty, Wakulla, and Washington counties will be automatically credited for three months of monthly access charges for each line. This free service is for consumer, business accounts and public safety organizations.

This follows the extension of Verizon’s free calls, texts and data offer through October 31.

First Responder and Community Support

Assets deployed in the community:

Our previously deployed community support assets remained in place today and Verizon employees from across the Southeast are staffing these locations to support residents and first responders.

New today:

  • A mobile command center was set up at Tyndall Air Force Base.

Services in place continue to include:

  • Our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-8pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections and additional charging stations inside. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center (large truck with device charging stations, internet access and ability to make phone calls) is set up at Breakfast Pointe Academy in Panama City Beach at 601 Jackson Blvd.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Wal-Mart Tyndall Avenue location in Callaway, FL (near Tyndall Air Force Base).
  • A Wireless Emergency Communications Center is set up at Insurance Village located near Sam's Club on 23rd St. in Panama City.
  • Two device charging stations have been placed at the shelter at Dean Bozeman High School in Panama City.
  • Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains available and supporting the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC). 
  • Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center
  • Tactical Command Trailer remains on-site to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. 
  • We have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Road in Marianna, which is open from 9 am-6 pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections.

OCTOBER 18, 10:30AM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Network Progress

Multiple efforts are being worked urgently in parallel to restore service in Bay County and surrounding areas of the Panhandle experiencing service interruptions as a result of Hurricane Michael. As fiber repair work continues in Bay County, service has been restored along Bennett Road, Highway 2301, Blue Springs Road and residential communities along them. We have also improved voice service in the Lynn Haven area.

Inadvertent fiber cuts resulting from recovery workers and residents managing debris removal as well as power and fiber rebuilding and restoral efforts throughout the community continue to impact previously restored cell sites. Our fiber crews are quick to assess and repair those new fiber cuts.

Portable cell sites with satellite connections have been deployed over the past 24 hours for the Army National Guard Panama City, Panama City Mall where they are staging recovery resources, Panama City Veterans Affairs, a Shelter at Northside Elementary School, a shelter at Dean Bozeman High School, Mossy Pond Library where they are staging recovery resources, Marianna Airport and the Army National Guard in Marianna.

Our flying cell site will provide service from above to the Calloway area east of Panama City today.

First Responder and Community Support

Assets deployed in the community:

Our previously deployed community support assets remain in place today and Verizon employees from across the Southeast are staffing these locations to support residents and first responders.

New today:

  • A mobile command center is headed to Tyndall Air Force Base, expected to arrive this evening.

Services in place continue to include:

  • Our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-8pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections and additional charging stations inside. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center (large truck with device charging stations, internet access and ability to make phone calls) will be set up at Breakfast Pointe Academy in Panama City Beach at 601 Jackson Blvd in Panama City Beach.
  • Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Wal-Mart Tyndall Ave location in Callaway, FL (near Tyndall Air Force Base).
  • A Wireless Emergency Communications Center is set up at Insurance Village located near Sam's Club on 23rd St. in Panama City.
  • Two device charging stations have been placed at the shelter at Dean Bozeman High School in Panama City
  • Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains available and supporting the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC). 
  • Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center
  • Tactical Command Trailer remains on-site to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. 
  • We have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Road in Marianna, which is open from 9 am-6 pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections.

OCTOBER 17, 10:00AM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Network Update

Late last night, we made critical progress and restored service to numerous sites throughout Bay County. Service has returned to majority of Panama City Beach. In addition, we have restored service along the Highway 79/388 loop around West Bay, in parts of downtown Panama City, in the southeast between Panama City and Tyndall Air Force Base, and along Highway 98. 

The progress we made overnight was significant and will continue throughout the day. With our primary fiber hubs restored, we will continue to rapidly restore additional service to the core of Panama City and Panama City Beach.

The situation is continuously evolving with thousands of recovery workers managing debris removal as well as power and fiber rebuilding and restoral efforts throughout the community. These efforts can result in additional cuts to fiber which is buried underground and also hung on utility poles. We are prepared to quickly repair any additional fiber cuts resulting from those activities. We appreciate the coordination with the power companies, emergency operations centers, and residents clearing their personal properties to help minimize the impact of those efforts.

As coverage is restored, we will be redeploying portable assets such as cell sites with satellite backhaul that were temporarily serving first responders in those locations to other areas still experiencing service interruptions. 

Our manned aerial vehicle carrying a flying cell site flew over Bay County yesterday and provided service from the sky for the northern portion of the town of Southport. Today, the flying cell site will deliver service between Northwest Beaches International Airport and the town of Ebro.

First Responder and Community Support

Our community support deployments will remain in place and we will continue to deploy additional community assets as needed. 

New today:

  • Beginning today, a Wireless Emergency Communications Center (large truck with device charging stations, internet access and ability to make phone calls) will be set up at Breakfast Pointe Academy in Panama City Beach
  • Beginning today, we will have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center at Wal-Mart Tyndall Ave location in Callaway, FL (near Tyndall Air Force Base).

Services in place continue to include:

  • Our Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.
  • A Wireless Emergency Communications Center is set up at Sam's Club on 23rd St. in Panama City.
  • Two device charging stations have been placed at Dean Bozeman High School in Panama City
  • A device charging station is set up at American Red Cross Shelter: Northside Elementary School at 2001 Northside Drive in Panama City.
  • Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains available and supporting the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC). 
  • Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center
  • Tactical Command Trailer remains on-site to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. 
  • Device charging station at an American Red Cross Shelter: Breakfast Point Academy located at 601 Jackson Blvd in Panama City Beach.
  • We have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Road in Marianna, which is open from 9 am-6 pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections.

October 16, 11:30AM

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Quick Summary

  • Two new cell sites in service overnight
  • One new mobile cell site deploying today
  • Second day of using a flying cell site to provide coverage from the air
  • Two new charging stations set up for local shelters

Hear directly from Krista Bourne, Market President and our team on the ground

Network progress

Progress continues in the restoration and repair of the damage caused by Hurricane Michael. In Panama City, two more sites came back into service overnight covering the town of Vernon in Washington County and the businesses and residential areas of the western part of Panama City including Gulf Coast State College and FSU Panama City. These new sites are in addition to the ones that came up late yesterday afternoon east of Panama City covering the area north of Alford and I-10 area, the town of Wausau and the Washington County EOC and an area north of Panama City where Highway 231 and US 98 meet is also back on air using repaired fiber. Crews continue their fiber repair work throughout the day today.

In Georgia, continued progress with fiber repair restored service in Early County, Mitchell County, and Seminole County. Only three counties in southern Georgia are still feeling the impact of the storm with partial service in Colquitt County, Grady County and Decatur County.

The manned aerial vehicle carrying a flying cell site will be taking flight over Bay County today and will provide service from the sky for the northern portion of the town of Southport. In addition, a portable cell site with satellite connection will be activated at the Bay County EOC.

Community Support

New charging stations are being deployed at American Red Cross Shelters: Breakfast Point Academy located at 601 Jackson Blvd in Panama City Beach and at Northside Elementary School at 2001 Northside Drive in Panama City.

Other community support remains in place today:

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains up and supporting the Bay County EOC. Another Tactical Command Trailer remains onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center.

Throughout today we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which is open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. Similarly, we have our Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.


October 15, 8:30pm

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Network Update

The work continues in Florida and Georgia to repair damaged fiber. Progress today resulted in four more cell sites on air. A critical site in Mexico Beach is now providing coverage for residents who remained and first responders in that community. Two additional sites are up east of Panama City covering the area north of Alford and I-10 area, the town of Wausau and the Washington County EOC. A tower covering an area north of Panama City where Highway 231 and US 98 meet is also back on air using repaired fiber.

Additionally, a manned aerial vehicle carried a flying cell site earlier today over Mexico Beach to provide coverage from above. With restoration of cell service there, we will have the ability to move the aerial vehicle to other impacted communities tomorrow.

We continued deployment of additional portable cell sites to Bay County Sheriff’s office, the Washington EOC in Chipley, and TECO Peoples Gas, bringing the total deployed portable cell sites to 14 throughout the impacted area.

Community Support

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer with multiple workstations and satellite connectivity remains up and supporting the Bay County EOC. Another Tactical Command Trailer remains onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one with the Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center.

Throughout today we had a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which was open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. Similarly, again today, we had our Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which was open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. The WECCs will be open again tomorrow, so if you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by one of those locations.

IMG_20181015

 


October 15, 10:30am

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Currently 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 98% in Florida with the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities still experiencing the most impact. 

We continue to work round the clock on network restoration efforts and have seen some positive movement, although fiber connection – needed for cell sites and some mobile assets to work – still poses a significant challenge. For example, as soon as we have fiber repaired and start to see sites come back on air, we experience new cuts resulting from other restoration efforts happening in the community such as clearing roads, residential property clearing, and replacing electric poles. This is just one of many hurdles our teams on the ground are facing. We ask for patience as we urgently continue this painstaking work to restore communications to our customers in these areas. This is our top priority.

Panama City, Panama City Beach, and surrounding areas: 

Our fiber crews are working around the clock to make repairs, and while they are making good progress, we are still experiencing new fiber cuts as soon as repairs are made. Once that fiber is restored we expect service to come back on throughout Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding areas. 

Again today, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer has multiple workstations and satellite connectivity and is supporting the Bay County EOC. Another Tactical Command Trailer is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one on its way to Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center. We have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support the Bay County EOC/911 Center, Panama City PD, Lynn Haven EOC, Tyndall Air Force Base, Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center, Springfield PD and City of Parker PD.

North and east of Panama City: 

We have seen continued progress to the north and east of Panama City with sites restoring near Chipola Park, in communities along Highway 71 and 275, throughout the town of Wewahitchka, in Grand Ridge, in Chipley, in the areas around White City and between White City and Wewahitchka and in Bayou George 231 and crossroad 2301.

Crews continue work to repair damaged cell site equipment and cut fiber for the remaining sites out of service. In the meantime, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which is open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the FDOT Chipley Office.

Mexico Beach: 

Access on and around Mexico Beach is still heavily restricted, however our crews are beginning to assess damage to equipment in that area as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, we are working on moving temporary assets into this market to provide search and rescue teams with communication.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the Gulf County EOC.

Just north of Mexico Beach, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connectivity.

Southern Georgia:

Counties with full service restoration include: Miller County, Calhoun County, which came back up last night, and Colquitt County.

Counties with some degradation to service: include Early County, Mitchell County, Grady County Albany, Thomas County and Seminole County. Fiber restoration is the key for bringing these sites back on air and we are working on repairing fiber in each location.

We are deploying two charging towers to the Albany Civic Center and our Albany store, located at 1100 N Westover Blvd, to support the community.

To support first responders, we have deployed a charging tower to Blakely City Hall, and have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support Early County 911 and Georgia State Patrol as well as to the Blakely EOC.


October 14, 4:00pm

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Though the vast majority of Florida and Georgia service has been restored – 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida – we continue to focus with urgency on restoration efforts in the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities. To our customers in those areas where our restoration is taking longer to complete, we hear you and we understand your concerns and frustrations. You have our commitment that our teams on the ground, as well as those supporting them, will work around the clock until our service is back to 100%.

Panama City, Panama City Beach, and surrounding areas:

The storm caused unprecedented damage to our fiber, which is essential for our network— including many of our temporary portable assets—to work. Our fiber crews are working around the clock to make repairs, and while they are making good progress, we still have work to do to get the fiber completely repaired. Once that fiber is repaired we expect service to come back on throughout Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding areas. 

In the interim, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer has multiple workstations and satellite connectivity and is supporting the Bay County Sherriff’s Office. Another Tactical Command Trailer is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one on its way to Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center. We have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC)/911 Center, Panama City PD, Lynn Haven EOC, Tyndall Air Force Base, Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center, Springfield PD and City of Parker PD.

North of Panama City:

With crews working on recovery efforts round the clock, the following cities/townships have come back online in the last 12 hours: Sneads, Altha, Chattahoochee, Rosedale, Alford, Jacob City, Campbellton, Graceville. Crews continue work to repair damaged cell site equipment and cut fiber for the remaining sites out of service. 

In the meantime, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which is open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the FDOT Chipley Office.

Mexico Beach:

Access on and around Mexico Beach is still heavily restricted, however our crews are beginning to assess damage to equipment in that area as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, we are working on moving temporary assets into this market to provide search and rescue teams with communication.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the Gulf County EOC.

Southern Georgia:

Despite the widespread devastation by Hurricane Michael tearing through Georgia as a category three storm, restoration has been fast-paced in the area. 

Counties with full service restoration include: Miller County, Calhoun County, which came back up last night, and Colquitt County.

Counties with some degradation to service: include Early County, Mitchell County, Grady County Albany, Thomas County and Seminole County. Teams are working each of these cell sites and anticipate service restoration for those areas soon. 

We are deploying two charging stations to the Albany Civic Center and our Albany store, located at 1100 N Westover Blvd, to support the community.

To support first responders, we have deployed a charging station to Blakely City Hall, and have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support Early County 911 and Georgia State Patrol.


October 13, 9:00pm

As crews continue recovery efforts in the Panama City, Panama City Beach and surrounding areas, we are making progress in restoration. Much of the fiber, needed to connect the cell sites, is being repaired and several more sites have come back into service. In the meantime, we have deployed an additional 10 portable cell sites called Cells on Wheels (COWs) to the area to activate when fiber is restored.

We have activated a total of 23 portable assets including 10 eFemtos (cellular repeaters) that provide coverage indoors using an internet connection and additional portable cell sites with satellite connection to emergency operation centers and other key locations. Those locations include Springfield PD, City of Parker PD, Tyndall Air Force Base, Georgia State Patrol, and Early County 911 Center.

Community support

A Tactical Command Trailer, complete with a conference room, workstations and satellite connectivity, is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. We are staging a Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECC) at our Panama City store and have a SPOT active at that site to provide connectivity, and will provide an update once these assets are operational and open to residents who need to charge their devices and connect with friends, family and loved ones. We have additional community support assets in the area and ready to deploy as needs are identified.


October 13, 3:00pm

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

While the vast majority of Florida and Georgia service has been restored – 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida – we continue to focus with urgency on restoration efforts in the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities. 

Network progress

Working with state heavy machinery clearing teams, we were finally able to access key facilities and fiber crews worked overnight to repair unprecedented fiber damage caused by strong winds and flying debris. Fiber is the connecting component of a network that carries data from point to point and is needed for both our permanent and temporary cell sites to be operational. While we have multiple fiber paths to carry data, the severity and intensity of the storm caused damage to all duplicate routes in the Panama City and Panama City Beach area. 

Our crews are making good progress repairing damaged fiber lines and laying new fiber, resulting in the restoration of three cell sites, and we will not rest until service is fully restored. Simultaneously, our tower and engineering crews are assessing tower damage, replacing and repairing equipment and continuing with our massive refueling operations in order to keep towers powered by generators running until commercial power is restored.

Support for first responders and relief organizations

To further assist rescue and recovery operations, we set up SPOTs – mobile cell sites connected with a satellite link – to Lynnhaven EOC, Gulf County EOC, and Calhoun County GA 911 center, in addition to the mobile sites we previously deployed to Mitchell County GA, Bay County EOC and 911 Center, Panama City PD, Panama City Beach PD and FDOT Chipley Office. Our teams are in the process of deploying more SPOTs today throughout the impacted area.

We have deployed nearly 400 devices and 200 portable chargers to support the recovery and relief efforts of first responders and non-profits. We have a Mobile Command Center and several other assets onsite supporting the Bay County EOC, as well as 2 Gooseneck Trailers – one in Panama City and one in Tallahassee supporting Salvation Army efforts.

Community support

We are staging a Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECC) at our Panama City store and have a SPOT on the way to provide connectivity, and will provide an update once these assets are operational and open to residents who need to charge their devices and connect with friends, family and loved ones.

We have additional assets in the area and ready to deploy as needs are identified.


October 12, 5:30pm

Continuing recovery efforts from the most intense storm to make landfall in the Florida panhandle and cause devastation across much of the southeast, as of this afternoon, 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida. We continue to urgently focus on those remaining sites that are out of service in the hardest hit areas including Panama City, Panama City Beach and Tallahassee. Additionally, our teams are actively deploying portable cell sites to the Calhoun County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and 911 center in Georgia, the Lynnhaven EOC and the Gulf County EOC to help with rescue and recovery efforts for first responders.

Tallahassee

Tallahassee is almost fully restored with engineers completing final restorations on the last few impacted cell sites in that area.

Panama City, Panama City Beach and surrounding communities

State road clearing teams are helping our engineers to gain access to areas cut off by heavy debris, damaged or flooded bridges and downed power lines. Engineers continue to conduct site surveys and repairs, while refueling teams keep our generators topped off and running in the midst of continued power outages. We have had some sites come back in service following the restoration of fiber links. Fiber crews continue to work on repairing fiber damaged by strong winds and flying debris.

Free Calling/Data/Text Offer Extended to October 21

To further support those in the hardest hit areas in the Florida Panhandle, we are extending our free calling, texting and data offer to our postpaid and prepaid customers who reside in Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gulf, Liberty and Wakulla Counties through Sunday, October 21.


October 12, 12:00

Network restoration efforts in Florida and Georgia continue today. As power outages continue across much of the southeast, many of our cell sites are running on backup power as designed for reliability, and massive refueling operations are underway to ensure those sites without commercial power continue in service for our customers and first responders. 

Tallahassee

Repairs to impacted network facilities are well underway, and in many cases already complete. Our crews made great progress in Tallahassee overnight repairing fiber connections and bringing sites back into service. They continue to restore sites impacted by the storm this morning in that community.

Panama City/Panama City Beach

In Panama City and Panama City Beach we are working with the federal, state and local response teams to clear access roads to key facilities so that our crews can complete repairs for those communities as soon as key facilities are accessible. We have deployed five mobile cell sites with satellite connection (SPOTs) to assist with recovery efforts while we work to restore permanent network sites. SPOTs have been deployed to assist Mitchell County, Bay County EOC and 911 Center, Panama City PD, Panama City Beach PD and FDOT Chipley Office.

Multiple mobile assets are arriving today, including a Mobile Command Trailer and several other assets to the Bay County EOC and 911 Center, an Accommodation Trailer and the Tactical Command Trailer to the Panama City PD, 2 Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECCs) in transit to Panama City and Tallahassee; and 2 Gooseneck Trailers supporting Salvation Army relief efforts in Panama City and Tallahassee.

As of today, all but our Panama City company-owned store in the hardest hit areas will be open for business. Visit our Store Locator for more information.


October 11, 12:00pm

Hurricane Michael, the most intense storm in history to make landfall in the Florida Panhandle, brought massive devastation throughout that area as well as parts of southern Georgia. As anticipated, commercial power is out throughout much of the impacted areas of Florida, Georgia and parts of Alabama and the Carolinas. Our network teams are staffing the 24x7 wireless command centers in hardened facilities that can withstand category five winds throughout these areas. In the hardest hit areas where we are experiencing service interruptions, we are assessing damage and mobilizing pre-staged equipment and people needed for repairs. Backup generators are running where needed and we are on standby to refuel generators to ensure our network facilities continue operating for our customers. We are in contact with federal, state and local emergency management teams and are coordinating communication needs and efforts with them. As the storm now moves through the Carolinas, we will continue to monitor the evolving situation there, with threats of flooding throughout an area still reeling from the effects of Hurricane Florence a few short weeks ago. 

Free calls, texting, and data, and donation to the Red Cross 

To further support the community, we are providing free calling, texting and data to our postpaid and prepaid customers who reside in the hardest hit areas.

In the coming days, we will deploy our Wireless Emergency Communication Centers, gooseneck trailers and other portable wireless assets to support residents, first responders and government officials without power to recharge devices, make calls to loved ones, and communicate/coordinate first responder activities.

Additionally, Verizon is contributing $250,000 to the American Red Cross to support recovery efforts.


October 15, 10:30am

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Currently 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 98% in Florida with the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities still experiencing the most impact. 

We continue to work round the clock on network restoration efforts and have seen some positive movement, although fiber connection – needed for cell sites and some mobile assets to work – still poses a significant challenge. For example, as soon as we have fiber repaired and start to see sites come back on air, we experience new cuts resulting from other restoration efforts happening in the community such as clearing roads, residential property clearing, and replacing electric poles. This is just one of many hurdles our teams on the ground are facing. We ask for patience as we urgently continue this painstaking work to restore communications to our customers in these areas. This is our top priority.

Panama City, Panama City Beach, and surrounding areas: 

Our fiber crews are working around the clock to make repairs, and while they are making good progress, we are still experiencing new fiber cuts as soon as repairs are made. Once that fiber is restored we expect service to come back on throughout Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding areas. 

Again today, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer has multiple workstations and satellite connectivity and is supporting the Bay County EOC. Another Tactical Command Trailer is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers, equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one on its way to Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center. We have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support the Bay County EOC/911 Center, Panama City PD, Lynn Haven EOC, Tyndall Air Force Base, Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center, Springfield PD and City of Parker PD.

North and east of Panama City: 

We have seen continued progress to the north and east of Panama City with sites restoring near Chipola Park, in communities along Highway 71 and 275, throughout the town of Wewahitchka, in Grand Ridge, in Chipley, in the areas around White City and between White City and Wewahitchka and in Bayou George 231 and crossroad 2301.

Crews continue work to repair damaged cell site equipment and cut fiber for the remaining sites out of service. In the meantime, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which is open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the FDOT Chipley Office.

Mexico Beach: 

Access on and around Mexico Beach is still heavily restricted, however our crews are beginning to assess damage to equipment in that area as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, we are working on moving temporary assets into this market to provide search and rescue teams with communication.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the Gulf County EOC.

Just north of Mexico Beach, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connectivity.

Southern Georgia:

Counties with full service restoration include: Miller County, Calhoun County, which came back up last night, and Colquitt County.

Counties with some degradation to service: include Early County, Mitchell County, Grady County Albany, Thomas County and Seminole County. Fiber restoration is the key for bringing these sites back on air and we are working on repairing fiber in each location.

We are deploying two charging towers to the Albany Civic Center and our Albany store, located at 1100 N Westover Blvd, to support the community.

To support first responders, we have deployed a charging tower to Blakely City Hall, and have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support Early County 911 and Georgia State Patrol as well as to the Blakely EOC.


October 14, 4:00pm

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

Though the vast majority of Florida and Georgia service has been restored – 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida – we continue to focus with urgency on restoration efforts in the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities. To our customers in those areas where our restoration is taking longer to complete, we hear you and we understand your concerns and frustrations. You have our commitment that our teams on the ground, as well as those supporting them, will work around the clock until our service is back to 100%.

Panama City, Panama City Beach, and surrounding areas:

The storm caused unprecedented damage to our fiber, which is essential for our network— including many of our temporary portable assets—to work. Our fiber crews are working around the clock to make repairs, and while they are making good progress, we still have work to do to get the fiber completely repaired. Once that fiber is repaired we expect service to come back on throughout Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding areas. 

In the interim, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at our Panama City store, located at 411A E 23rd St, which is open from 10am-5pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, our Big Red Command Trailer has multiple workstations and satellite connectivity and is supporting the Bay County Sherriff’s Office. Another Tactical Command Trailer is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. Two Gooseneck trailers equipped with connectivity, 5 mobile workstations and an inflatable shelter are in the area as well – one with the Salvation Army and one on its way to Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center. We have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support the Bay County Emergency Operations Center (EOC)/911 Center, Panama City PD, Lynn Haven EOC, Tyndall Air Force Base, Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center, Springfield PD and City of Parker PD.

North of Panama City:

With crews working on recovery efforts round the clock, the following cities/townships have come back online in the last 12 hours: Sneads, Altha, Chattahoochee, Rosedale, Alford, Jacob City, Campbellton, Graceville. Crews continue work to repair damaged cell site equipment and cut fiber for the remaining sites out of service. 

In the meantime, we have a Wireless Emergency Communications Center set up at the American Red Cross shelter at Marianna High School, located at 3546 Caverns Rd. in Marianna, which is open from 9am-6pm and has service from a portable cell site that works with satellite connections. If you need to charge your device or connect with friends, loved ones or resources, we invite you to stop by that location.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the FDOT Chipley Office.

Mexico Beach:

Access on and around Mexico Beach is still heavily restricted, however our crews are beginning to assess damage to equipment in that area as it is safe to do so. In the meantime, we are working on moving temporary assets into this market to provide search and rescue teams with communication.

To support first responders, we have deployed a mobile cell site with satellite connection to support the Gulf County EOC.

Southern Georgia:

Despite the widespread devastation by Hurricane Michael tearing through Georgia as a category three storm, restoration has been fast-paced in the area. 

Counties with full service restoration include: Miller County, Calhoun County, which came back up last night, and Colquitt County.

Counties with some degradation to service: include Early County, Mitchell County, Grady County Albany, Thomas County and Seminole County. Teams are working each of these cell sites and anticipate service restoration for those areas soon. 

We are deploying two charging stations to the Albany Civic Center and our Albany store, located at 1100 N Westover Blvd, to support the community.

To support first responders, we have deployed a charging station to Blakely City Hall, and have also deployed mobile cell sites with satellite connection to support Early County 911 and Georgia State Patrol.


October 13, 9:00pm

As crews continue recovery efforts in the Panama City, Panama City Beach and surrounding areas, we are making progress in restoration. Much of the fiber, needed to connect the cell sites, is being repaired and several more sites have come back into service. In the meantime, we have deployed an additional 10 portable cell sites called Cells on Wheels (COWs) to the area to activate when fiber is restored.

We have activated a total of 23 portable assets including 10 eFemtos (cellular repeaters) that provide coverage indoors using an internet connection and additional portable cell sites with satellite connection to emergency operation centers and other key locations. Those locations include Springfield PD, City of Parker PD, Tyndall Air Force Base, Georgia State Patrol, and Early County 911 Center.

Community support

A Tactical Command Trailer, complete with a conference room, workstations and satellite connectivity, is onsite to support the Panama City Beach Police Department. We are staging a Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECC) at our Panama City store and have a SPOT active at that site to provide connectivity, and will provide an update once these assets are operational and open to residents who need to charge their devices and connect with friends, family and loved ones. We have additional community support assets in the area and ready to deploy as needs are identified.


October 13, 3:00pm

Media assets highlighting our Michael response and recovery efforts are available here.

While the vast majority of Florida and Georgia service has been restored – 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida – we continue to focus with urgency on restoration efforts in the hardest hit area of Panama City, Panama City Beach and the surrounding communities. 

Network progress

Working with state heavy machinery clearing teams, we were finally able to access key facilities and fiber crews worked overnight to repair unprecedented fiber damage caused by strong winds and flying debris. Fiber is the connecting component of a network that carries data from point to point and is needed for both our permanent and temporary cell sites to be operational. While we have multiple fiber paths to carry data, the severity and intensity of the storm caused damage to all duplicate routes in the Panama City and Panama City Beach area. 

Our crews are making good progress repairing damaged fiber lines and laying new fiber, resulting in the restoration of three cell sites, and we will not rest until service is fully restored. Simultaneously, our tower and engineering crews are assessing tower damage, replacing and repairing equipment and continuing with our massive refueling operations in order to keep towers powered by generators running until commercial power is restored.

Support for first responders and relief organizations

To further assist rescue and recovery operations, we set up SPOTs – mobile cell sites connected with a satellite link – to Lynnhaven EOC, Gulf County EOC, and Calhoun County GA 911 center, in addition to the mobile sites we previously deployed to Mitchell County GA, Bay County EOC and 911 Center, Panama City PD, Panama City Beach PD and FDOT Chipley Office. Our teams are in the process of deploying more SPOTs today throughout the impacted area.

We have deployed nearly 400 devices and 200 portable chargers to support the recovery and relief efforts of first responders and non-profits. We have a Mobile Command Center and several other assets onsite supporting the Bay County EOC, as well as 2 Gooseneck Trailers – one in Panama City and one in Tallahassee supporting Salvation Army efforts.

Community support

We are staging a Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECC) at our Panama City store and have a SPOT on the way to provide connectivity, and will provide an update once these assets are operational and open to residents who need to charge their devices and connect with friends, family and loved ones.

We have additional assets in the area and ready to deploy as needs are identified.


October 12, 5:30pm

Continuing recovery efforts from the most intense storm to make landfall in the Florida panhandle and cause devastation across much of the southeast, as of this afternoon, 99% of our network is in service in Georgia and 97% in Florida. We continue to urgently focus on those remaining sites that are out of service in the hardest hit areas including Panama City, Panama City Beach and Tallahassee. Additionally, our teams are actively deploying portable cell sites to the Calhoun County Emergency Operations Center (EOC) and 911 center in Georgia, the Lynnhaven EOC and the Gulf County EOC to help with rescue and recovery efforts for first responders.

Tallahassee

Tallahassee is almost fully restored with engineers completing final restorations on the last few impacted cell sites in that area.

Panama City, Panama City Beach and surrounding communities

State road clearing teams are helping our engineers to gain access to areas cut off by heavy debris, damaged or flooded bridges and downed power lines. Engineers continue to conduct site surveys and repairs, while refueling teams keep our generators topped off and running in the midst of continued power outages. We have had some sites come back in service following the restoration of fiber links. Fiber crews continue to work on repairing fiber damaged by strong winds and flying debris.

Free Calling/Data/Text Offer Extended to October 21

To further support those in the hardest hit areas in the Florida Panhandle, we are extending our free calling, texting and data offer to our postpaid and prepaid customers who reside in Bay, Calhoun, Franklin, Gulf, Liberty and Wakulla Counties through Sunday, October 21.


October 12, 12:00

Network restoration efforts in Florida and Georgia continue today. As power outages continue across much of the southeast, many of our cell sites are running on backup power as designed for reliability, and massive refueling operations are underway to ensure those sites without commercial power continue in service for our customers and first responders. 

Tallahassee

Repairs to impacted network facilities are well underway, and in many cases already complete. Our crews made great progress in Tallahassee overnight repairing fiber connections and bringing sites back into service. They continue to restore sites impacted by the storm this morning in that community.

Panama City/Panama City Beach

In Panama City and Panama City Beach we are working with the federal, state and local response teams to clear access roads to key facilities so that our crews can complete repairs for those communities as soon as key facilities are accessible. We have deployed five mobile cell sites with satellite connection (SPOTs) to assist with recovery efforts while we work to restore permanent network sites. SPOTs have been deployed to assist Mitchell County, Bay County EOC and 911 Center, Panama City PD, Panama City Beach PD and FDOT Chipley Office.

Multiple mobile assets are arriving today, including a Mobile Command Trailer and several other assets to the Bay County EOC and 911 Center, an Accommodation Trailer and the Tactical Command Trailer to the Panama City PD, 2 Wireless Emergency Communications Center (WECCs) in transit to Panama City and Tallahassee; and 2 Gooseneck Trailers supporting Salvation Army relief efforts in Panama City and Tallahassee.

As of today, all but our Panama City company-owned store in the hardest hit areas will be open for business. Visit our Store Locator for more information.


October 11, 12:00pm

Hurricane Michael, the most intense storm in history to make landfall in the Florida Panhandle, brought massive devastation throughout that area as well as parts of southern Georgia. As anticipated, commercial power is out throughout much of the impacted areas of Florida, Georgia and parts of Alabama and the Carolinas. Our network teams are staffing the 24x7 wireless command centers in hardened facilities that can withstand category five winds throughout these areas. In the hardest hit areas where we are experiencing service interruptions, we are assessing damage and mobilizing pre-staged equipment and people needed for repairs. Backup generators are running where needed and we are on standby to refuel generators to ensure our network facilities continue operating for our customers. We are in contact with federal, state and local emergency management teams and are coordinating communication needs and efforts with them. As the storm now moves through the Carolinas, we will continue to monitor the evolving situation there, with threats of flooding throughout an area still reeling from the effects of Hurricane Florence a few short weeks ago. 

Free calls, texting, and data, and donation to the Red Cross 

To further support the community, we are providing free calling, texting and data to our postpaid and prepaid customers who reside in the hardest hit areas.

In the coming days, we will deploy our Wireless Emergency Communication Centers, gooseneck trailers and other portable wireless assets to support residents, first responders and government officials without power to recharge devices, make calls to loved ones, and communicate/coordinate first responder activities.

Additionally, Verizon is contributing $250,000 to the American Red Cross to support recovery efforts.