News Release

Wharton, New Jersey, Crossing Guards Get Wireless Safety Net

Verizon Wireless Donates Seven Wireless Phones

August 15, 2004

David Samberg
845-365-7212Robin B. Nicol

WHARTON, NJ — Students in Wharton will walk to school on safer streets this fall, thanks to seven wireless phones and service donated by Verizon Wireless. Chief of Police Anthony Fernandez accepted the donation at police headquarters this week.

Programmed to dial 9-1-1 and the Wharton Police Department, the phones will allow crossing guards in heavy traffic areas in the town to summon help quickly and easily in an emergency without leaving their posts.

"Every day, school crossing guards are on the front lines protecting our children as they navigate busy streets and intersections on their way to class," said Charles Hand, president of Verizon Wireless' New York Metro Region. "These phones will ensure they can summon help immediately. By augmenting 9-1-1 service with a hotline to the police, Verizon Wireless hopes to cover many kinds of emergency situations, allowing guards to report suspicious activities as well as life-threatening emergencies."

Since the inception of the company's HopeLineSM community service program in 1995, Verizon Wireless has donated and recycled more than 90,000 wireless phones in the New York Metro area, providing essential communication tools to people who need a vital, reliable link to emergency services in times of crisis. Two million used wireless phones have been collected and recycled nationwide for the benefit of domestic violence victims and advocacy groups. Donations are accepted at all 70 Verizon Wireless Communications Stores in the New York Metro area. All wireless phone models, batteries and chargers from any carrier are accepted. For additional information, visit  

About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 40.4 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at To receive broadcast-quality video footage of Verizon Wireless operations, log onto