IRVING, TX — As Tropical Storm Erin churns toward the Texas Gulf Coast, Verizon advises customers in the storm's projected path to execute an emergency plan for wireless and home telecommunications.
Verizon provides wireless, local, long-distance and Internet service in a number of cities along and near the storm's projected path including wireless service in Corpus Christi and Victoria; as well as both wireless and wireline service in Aransas Pass, Falfurrias, Magnolia Beach, Palacios, Port Clinton, Port Lavaca, Port O'Connor, Rio Grande City, Robstown, Roma, Santa Rosas, Seadrift and Weslaco.
Verizon Wireless, which has continued the intensive preparations to maintain strong network coverage before, during and after the hurricane season, offers residents these tips to safely use their wireless phones during major storms and other times of crisis:
- Keep wireless phone batteries fully charged in case local power is lost well before warnings are issued.
- Have additional charged batteries and car-charger adapters available for back-up power.
- Keep phones, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry, accessible location and in a sealed water-resistant plastic bag or pouch.
- Maintain a list of emergency phone numbers police, fire and rescue agencies; power companies; insurance providers, family, friends and co-workers, etc. and program them into your phone.
- Distribute wireless phone numbers to family members and friends.
- Limit non-emergency calls to conserve battery power and free up wireless networks for emergency agencies and operations.
- Send brief text messages rather than voice calls for the same reasons as above.
- Check weather and news reports available through many Internet-connected wireless phones, and through other wireless phone applications, when power is out. Customers in V CAST Mobile TV coverage areas can watch news updates 24 hours a day from their wireless phones to stay informed on the latest hurricane forecasts and information.
- If away from home or planning an evacuation route, use location-based services, such as Verizon Wireless' VZ NavigatorSM for turn-by-turn, voice prompted directions. Parents can also use Verizon Wireless' ChaperoneSM service to help identify the whereabouts of their young children's phones.
Verizon Telecom urges wireline consumers to cross-check their home telecommunications services before the storm's arrival and offers the following checklist:
- Purchase an inexpensive phone with a cord that plugs directly into a wall jack. Cordless phones won't work when the lights are out even though the backup power in Verizon's network will keep the local phone service going unless the actual line to the home has been damaged. Also, Internet calling services won't work because the hardware requires power. Having a traditional corded phone available or always hooked up to an extension helps consumers stay in touch.
- Program and forward calls from your home line to an alternative number if you will be away from your home or have to evacuate.
- Use your home voice mail to communicate with family members in case of disaster by leaving and retrieving messages to and from each other.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 62.1 million customers. The largest US wireless company and largest wireless data provider, based on revenues, Verizon Wireless is headquartered in Basking Ridge, NJ, with 67,000 employees nationwide. The company is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE:VZ), headquartered in New York, is a leader in delivering broadband and other wireline and wireless communication innovations to mass market, business, government and wholesale customers. Verizon Wireless operates America's most reliable wireless network, serving more than 62 million customers nationwide. Verizon's Wireline operations include Verizon Business, which delivers innovative and seamless business solutions to customers around the world, and Verizon Telecom, which brings customers the benefits of converged communications, information and entertainment services over the nation's most advanced fiber-optic network. A Dow 30 company, Verizon has a diverse workforce of more than 238,000 and last year generated consolidated operating revenues of more than $88 billion. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.
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