FCC to Verizon: Derecho 911 outage ‘unacceptable’

WASHINGTON – A disruption in emergency services during the June derecho could have been avoided. That is the finding of the Federal Communications Commission after looking into the Verizon phone outage that left more than 1 million people without 911 services.

The report from the FCC, released Thursday, faults the phone company and calls the system failures “preventable” and “unacceptable.” The report says Verizon could have planned better and offered a list of recommendations on how the company can improve.

“What happened during the derecho must never happen again. It was horrible,” said Sharon Bulova, chairwoman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors.

Verizon says it has already made adjustments.

“Our performance during Hurricane Sandy in late October really was good evidence of some of the progress we’ve made,” said company spokesman Harry Mitchell.

Among the recommendations, the report suggests Verizon improve its backup power and monitoring systems.

FCC's findings on Verizon's 9-1-1 outage by wtopweb

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WTOP’s Andrew Mollenbeck contributed to this report.

Follow @MollenbeckWTOP and @WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2013 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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