AT&T Networks Prepared As Major Winter Storm Approaches Maine

Fri Feb 8, 2013 1:02pm EST

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Company Encourages Customers to Prepare, Offers Communication Tips


PORTLAND, Maine,  Feb. 8, 2013  /PRNewswire/ -- With an arsenal of disaster
response equipment and personnel on standby as a major winter storm nears, AT&T*
is ready to respond quickly.  

(Logo:  http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120612/DA23287LOGO)

AT&T has activated our storm preparedness process as we closely monitor the path
of the winter storm, which is expected to impact the northeastern  United States
 this weekend. Among our preparations, we've topped off fuel at generators
positioned at cell sites, installed and tested high-capacity back-up batteries
at cell sites, installed "Quick Connect Generator Plugs" at many of our cell
sites and staged additional emergency response equipment in strategic locations.

In addition, AT&T has continued to enhance network redundancy in storm-prone
areas by installing more back-up and permanent generators at critical cell sites
and switching facilities; locating critical equipment in less vulnerable areas;
upgrading electronics critical to network operations above expected flood
levels; and protecting physical facilities against flooding.  

"We know how much our customers rely on AT&T, particularly during major storms
like this," said  Patricia Jacobs, president, AT&T New England. "That's why we
conduct extensive readiness drills and simulations throughout the year and do
everything we can to ensure our networks are prepared when severe weather
strikes. We have been working for the past few days to position equipment and
crews to respond to the storm and are closely linked with  Maine  public
officials in their storm response efforts. With a storm of this magnitude, we
may have some outages. But if service goes down, we'll do all we can to get it
back up as fast as possible."  

The AT&T National Disaster Recovery (NDR) program is one of the industry's
largest and most advanced disaster response programs and includes more than 320
technology and equipment trailers that can be quickly deployed to respond to
disasters. The NDR team works closely with local AT&T network personnel,
regional Emergency Operations Centers and Local Response Centers to restore and
maintain service until permanent repairs can be made.

Just as we prepare our networks and personnel, AT&T encourages residents and
small businesses to consider the following recommendations in preparation for
the storm.

Consumer Tips:

* Keep your wireless phone batteries charged at all times.  Have an alternative
plan to recharge your battery in case of a power outage, such as using your car
charger to charge your device or having extra mobile phone batteries on hand.  
* Have a family communication plan in place.  Designate someone out of the area
asa central contact, and make certain that all family members know who to
contact if they get separated. Most importantly, practice your emergency plan in
advance.  
* Program all of your emergency contact numbers and e-mail addresses into your
mobile phone. Numbers should include the police department, fire station and
hospital, as well as your family members.  
* Track the storm and access weather information on your wireless device.  Many
homes lose power during severe weather. If you have a wireless device that
provides access to the Internet, you can watch weather reports on your phone.** 

* Camera phones provide assistance.  If you have a camera phone, take, store and
send photos - even video clips - of damaged property to your insurance company
from your device.  
* Take advantage of location-based mapping technology.  Services such as AT&T
Navigator and AT&T  FamilyMap  can help you seek evacuation routes or avoid
traffic congestion from downed trees or power lines, as well as track a family
member's wireless device in case you get separated.**

Maximizing Service During and After a Storm:

* Try text messaging. During an emergency situation, text messages may go
through more quickly than voice calls because they require fewer network
resources. All of AT&T's wireless devices are text messaging capable. Depending
on your text or data plan, additional charges may apply.  
* Be prepared for high call volume.  During an emergency, many people are trying
to use their phones at the same time. The increased calling volume may create
network congestion, leading to "fast busy" signals on your wireless phone or a
slow dial tone on your landline phone. If this happens, hang up, wait several
seconds and then try the call again. This allows your original call data to
clear the network before you try again.  
* Keep non-emergency calls to a minimum, and limit your calls to the most
important ones. If there is severe weather, chances are many people will be
attempting to place calls to loved ones, friends and business associates.

Additional information and tips for disaster preparedness can be found at 
www.att.com/aboutus  and  www.att.com/vitalconnections.  



*AT&T products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and
affiliates of AT&T Inc. under the AT&T brand and not by AT&T Inc.

**Data charges may apply.

About AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE:T) is a premier communications holding company and  one of the
most honored companies in the world. Its subsidiaries and affiliates - AT&T
operating companies - are the providers of AT&T services in  the United States 
and internationally. With a powerful array of network resources that includes
the nation's largest 4G network, AT&T is a leading provider of wireless, Wi-Fi,
high speed Internet, voice and cloud-based services. A leader in mobile
Internet, AT&T also offers the best wireless coverage worldwide of any U.S.
carrier, offering the most wireless phones that work in the most countries. It
also offers advanced TV services under the AT&T U-verse®  and AT&T | DIRECTV
brands. The company's suite of IP-based business communications services is one
of the most advanced in the world.  

Additional information about AT&T Inc. and the products and services provided by
AT&T subsidiaries and affiliates is available at  http://www.att.com/aboutus  or
follow our news on Twitter at @ATT, on Facebook at  http://www.facebook.com/att 
and YouTube at  http://www.youtube.com/att.

© 2013 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. 4G not available
everywhere. AT&T, the AT&T logo and all other marks contained herein are
trademarks of AT&T Intellectual Property and/or AT&T affiliated companies. All
other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

 

SOURCE  AT&T Inc.


Kate MacKinnon, +1-508-271-8442, kate.mackinnon@att.com

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