Verizon is ready as potential tropical storm threatens coastal Carolinas

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GREENVILLE, S.C. - As Potential Tropical Cyclone Ten is predicted to gain strength and become Tropical Storm Irma, Verizon Wireless is well-prepared to serve customers in the coastal Carolinas and up the east coast with the nation's largest and most reliable 4G LTE network.

Final fine-tuning measures are underway and local Network teams also are prepared to travel the coast to assist areas hit hardest by the storm. The efforts are part of a year-round plan to make the network strong and reliable during storms and any other circumstances.

Network enhancements in the Carolinas since last year's storm season include expanding and densifying the most advanced 4G LTE (Long-Term Evolution) services across the state; adding capacity to hundreds of cell sites; fortifying coverage along evacuation routes; and installing new in-building network systems at hospitals, government and emergency facilities, high-traffic public venues and other key locations.

In addition, the company has a number of "switch" network processing centers across the Carolinas. With hardened shells, these facilities also feature large-scale on-site power generation, various redundant operations and technologies, and other back-up systems to ensure the company's network remains strong, running and reliable.

"Our preparations for severe weather don't start when a storm threatens; our dedicated team of network engineers work year-round to ensure our customers can connect when they need it most," said Sergei Mislevy, executive director for network assurance for Verizon Wireless. "We take great pride in providing a superior network experience, especially in and after severe weather."

Other Verizon Wireless ongoing efforts to ensure a reliable network include:

  • Preparing emergency command centers in the case of a storm or other crisis
  • Readying the company's fleet of mobile equipment including of Cells on Wheels (COWS), Cells on Light Trucks (COLTS), and generators on a trailers (GOaTS) that can be rolled into hard-hit locations or areas that need extra network capacity
  • Pre-arranging 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
  • Topping off and testing generators and battery backups in cells sites
  • Coordinating with local, state and federal emergency services so they have the communications services they need
  • Pre-positioning emergency equipment, setting up our local switch location to house our 24x7 command center
  • Using the newest technology such as unmanned aerial vehicles to survey tower damage after a storm

These initiatives are part of a national network investment of nearly $11.2 billion in 2016 to increase the coverage, reliability and capacity of its premier network in the Carolinas and across the country.

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