IRVINE, CA — With Santa Ana winds blowing, Southern California residents face the increased risk of wildfires. Verizon Wireless urges residents to prepare emergency communication plans and offers consumers these tips:
- 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.
- Store emergency phone numbers in your phone – police, fire, and rescue agencies; power companies; insurance providers; family, friends and co-workers.
- Keep phones, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry, accessible location.
- Distribute wireless phone numbers to family members and friends.
- Forward your home phone calls to your wireless number if you evacuate.
- Be ready to communicate by brief text messages as needed – it conserves capacity on wireless networks so they’re more available to emergency agencies.
Verizon Wireless works around the clock to maintain and expand service rapidly to support first responders during local and regional disasters. During the 2009 Station Fire, the company deployed a wireless network enhancer on wheels along with a portable generator at the fire command center. The enhancer’s 40-foot tall antenna expanded wireless coverage and capacity for the crews fighting the remote blaze.
Since 2000, Verizon Wireless has invested $5.6 billion in its California network to further expand and enhance its voice and data networks and safeguard network reliability. Standard Verizon Wireless network reliability features include battery back-up power and generators at all switching facilities and many cell site locations.
Later this year, Verizon Wireless is bringing the world’s first large-scale 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) network to the greater Los Angeles and San Diego metropolitan areas. The deployment is part of the company’s major network launch in 38 major metropolitan areas by the end of the year, covering 110 million people.
In the Los Angeles area, 4G LTE coverage will extend north to Pasadena, east to Chino, south to San Clemente and west to Woodland Hills. In the San Diego area, 4G LTE coverage will extend north to Del Mar and Poway, east to Lakeside and south to Imperial Beach. Verizon Wireless expects 4G LTE average data rates to be 5-12 megabits per second (Mbps) on the downlink and 2-5 Mbps on the uplink in real-world operating conditions.
For more information on the Verizon Wireless network, products and services, visit www.verizonwireless.com.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable and largest wireless voice and 3G data network, serving more than 93 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 79,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE, NASDAQ: VZ) and Vodafone (LSE, NASDAQ: VOD). For more information, visit 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.