AT&T preparing for storm service - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

AT&T preparing for storm service

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When the weather becomes the thing everyone is talking about, phones and connectivity are extremely important.  AT&T company representatives say they are ready with disaster response equipment and personnel on standby as another round of weather approaches.
 
AT&T tells us the company has activated their storm preparedness process.  The wireless provider reports enhancing 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 and upgrading electronics critical to network operations above expected flood levels.  

"We know how a severe weather event such as Winter Storm Pax can disrupt everything from travel to business. 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 so that we can minimize the disruptions," said AT&T Alabama President Fred McCallum. "If we have some outages, we are prepared to get customers back in service as fast as possible. We have been working for the past few days to position equipment and crews in preparation for the storm and we are closely linked with public officials in their storm response efforts."
 
AT&T encourages residents and small businesses to consider the following recommendations to maximize service during and after a storm.
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·    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.
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·    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.
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·    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.

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