FairPoint, Verizon complete preparation work for Hurricane Sandy

Telcos' emergency teams are ready to address potential damage
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As Hurricane Sandy arrives in the Northeast, area telcos FairPoint Communications (Nasdaq: FRP) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ) said they are both prepared to deal with any potential damage issues that could arise.

According to the most recent reports from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Hurricane Sandy will make a "direct impact" on parts of New England on either late Monday or Tuesday, "bringing heavy winds and a possible mixture of snow and rain."

FairPoint, in addition to operating networks in North Carolina and other  Midwest regions, has a large footprint in Northern New England.

To ensure there's no interruption in telephone service, FairPoint has backed up its network with batteries and gas-powered generators. The telco's emergency planning team has also readied a cadre of crews and supplies, including poles, cable and other equipment, to be rapidly deployed in areas where any damage occurs.

Verizon, like FairPoint, is taking similar measures to prepare for any impact the storm could bring.

On the wireless side, the telco is helping consumers deal with the storm by increasing its inventory of car phone chargers and universal charging devices at company-owned and -operated communications stores.

In the Eastern region, Verizon decided to delay nonessential construction projects and internal training programs, so it can dedicate any available resources to helping customers.

Both the wireline and wireless divisions have activated national and regional command and control centers, enabling Verizon operations teams to monitor the storm's progress and company operations, including network performance. The service provider has also reached out to local power, service providers and the public-safety community, as well as state, county and municipal agencies along the East Coast and the Midwest.

It has also staged traditional equipment, including telephone poles, fiber and copper cable, portable cell sites that can replace a damaged cell tower and mobile emergency generators and contacted outside partners to get access to necessary communications equipment and supplies quickly.

For more:
- see the Verizon release
- here's the FairPoint release

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