Saturday, November 3, 2012
STATEMENT FROM FCC CHAIRMAN GENACHOWSKI & DAVID TURETSKY
REGARDING COMMUNICATIONS NETWORK IMPROVEMENTS AND CHALLENGES
The following is attributable to FCC Chairman Julius
“Overall, we’re seeing both continued improvement in
communications networks and also that much work remains to be done to restore service fully. The supply
of fuel to generators is essential to keep communications service up and running, and we’re working
with federal, state, and local authorities to speed fuel delivery. This is a priority because our
commercial communications networks are essential to emergency response and recovery efforts, as well as to
commercial activities and connecting with family.”
The following is attributable to FCC Public Safety &
Homeland Security Bureau Chief David Turetsky:
“Our Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS) remains
activated and we continue to collect data
from communications companies about the impacts of the
storm. As of 10 a.m. this morning, our assessment indicates steady improvements in wireline and
wireless communications networks throughout the affected area. However, restoration efforts in the hardest
hit areas – including New York and New Jersey – continues to be more difficult.
Replenishing fuel supplies for generators that are enabling communications networks to continue operating is a
particularly critical challenge.
“Our latest data indicate that calls throughout the affected
area can be received at 9-1-1 call centers, though in limited cases calls are being re-routed to another
center or do not contain location information.
We have reached out to every affected 911 center and the relevant state
authorities, and we are talking to communications providers about what can be
done to address this.
“Based on data from 10 a.m. this morning, the number of cell
site outages overall has declined from approximately 25 percent to 19 percent. This figure includes many cases where cell
sites that are otherwise operational are effectively inoperable because of
outages in other parts of the communications infrastructure, which is highly
interdependent. With regards to cable
services, it appears that outages have declined to approximately 12 – 14 percent,
from initial outages estimates of 25 percent.
“Meanwhile, FCC staff at headquarters and at field offices
are working around the clock to support FEMA’s efforts, and respond to requests for support from
state and local teams, as well as communications companies.
For example, FCC field agents have been working with others on-the ground
in New York City to get fuel to a switching center that serves many
We also issued another special temporary authorization,
which was to assist an energy company with restoration operations in several states.“As recovery
efforts continue, our highest priority remains to continue working with all
stakeholders to help restore America’s communications infrastructure.
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