Avalon Mayor Martin Pagliughi hosted a follow-up meeting with Verizon officials on Monday, December 20th to discuss a telephone outage that affected hundreds of residences and businesses on the Seven Mile Island during October 28th-November 8th, 2010.
“This outage is not only about an inconvenience to our community, it’s really about a critical public safety issue”, Pagliughi said. “Avalon experienced a Verizon landline telephone outage without notification or even acknowledgement from Verizon that could have been much worse. It is my intent to make sure that public safety is never compromised as a result of equipment failure or negligence by one of the utilities that is provides a service in our community”.
Pagliughi hosted a meeting that involved officials from both Avalon and Stone Harbor at the Avalon Borough Hall to learn more about a remediation plan by Verizon. On November 8th, Verizon officials came to Avalon at Pagliughi’s request to investigate the telephone outage. Elected officials were at both meetings and were joined by New Jersey Board of Public Utilities Commissioner Nick Asselta, along with Verizon New Jersey’s Vice President of External Affairs, Sam Delgado and other Verizon representatives.
As a result of the meeting called by Pagliughi, Verizon has committed to a remediation plan that addresses several public safety concerns for both Avalon and Stone Harbor. This plan includes:
–A total replacement of the technology card that failed during the telephone outage. The card will be replaced by technicians sometime during January, 2011 with no anticipated interruption of telephone service
–Verizon will draft a plan that will result in greater recognition of a community-wide problem along with proper notification of emergency management authorities in the affected region.
–A special practice “drill” will be conducted involving county and municipal emergency management officials that will test Verizon’s new contingency plan to notify a community when a phone outage occurs.
–Verizon will arrange a field trip during the first quarter of 2011 so local officials can talk with staff at a local field office to discuss communication efforts between the utility and local emergency management officials.