BELLEVUE, WA — As part of its ongoing effort to provide customers with efficient, timely service, Puget Sound Energy recently selected Verizon Wireless as its primary service provider for wireless communication needs. This move is critical to the utility's plans for improved storm response.
Based on experience from the devastating December 2006 Hanukkah Eve wind storm, PSE will be able to better communicate in the field through the Verizon Wireless network.
"During times of crisis, we need to be assured of reliable two-way communication between first responders on the scene, response crews, and our field and central emergency operation coordinating centers," said Bert Valdman, PSE's executive vice president and chief operating officer. "The redundancy capabilities and proven network reliability of Verizon Wireless will improve PSE's emergency response and service restoration times, as well as enhance our day-to-day communications."
Network reliability played a critical role in PSE's decision to choose Verizon Wireless as its primary cellular service provider. The company's commitment to voice and data reliability is backed by standards that include eight hours of battery back-up power at all facilities, generators installed at all switching facilities and many cell sites, and a fleet of mobile cell sites with their own power capabilities. At the height of the 2006 windstorm, 85 percent of Verizon Wireless' cell sites remained in service. The network returned to full strength within 72 hours.
"We prepare for emergencies all year long because we know the critical role communications play for everyone especially emergency teams," said Kelley Kurtzman, regional president, Verizon Wireless. "Our network has been tested by some of North America's most destructive storms and natural disasters and we are proud to be the carrier people count on not only for their day-to-day wireless needs but during those emergencies as well."
Verizon Wireless' ongoing network investment now totals more than $773 million in Washington state alone over the past seven years. The company has invested more than $44 billion nationwide since the company was formed on average $5.5 billion each year to add new services and further strengthen reliability.
Verizon Wireless has a dedicated team to help businesses choose the latest in wireless technology, optimize their operations, and streamline their budgets. For more information on business solutions go to www.verizonwireless.com.
About Verizon Wireless
Verizon Wireless operates the nation's most reliable wireless voice and data network, serving 65.7 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with 69,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). For more information, go to: 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.
About Puget Sound Energy
Washington state's oldest and largest energy utility, with a 6,000-square-mile service territory stretching across 11 counties, Puget Sound Energy serves more than 1 million electric customers and 729,000 natural gas customers primarily in the growing Puget Sound region of Western Washington. PSE, a subsidiary of Puget Energy (NYSE: PSD), meets the energy needs of its growing customer base through incremental, cost-effective energy conservation, low-cost procurement of sustainable energy resources, and far-sighted investment in the energy-delivery infrastructure. PSE employees are dedicated to providing great customer service to deliver energy that is safe, reliable, reasonably priced, and environmentally responsible. For more information, visit PSE.com.