FairPoint works to restore phone service in parts of Vermont following Hurricane Irene

FairPoint Communications (Nasdaq: FRP), whose territory includes the New England state of Vermont where Hurricane Irene has flooded 13 towns, reported it is working to restore basic phone and broadband services in the state.

The 13 Vermont towns in FairPoint's territory affected in the storm include Cavendish, Granville, Hancock, Killington, Mendon, Marlboro, Pittsfield, Plymouth, Rochester, Stockbridge, Strafford, Stratton, and Wardsboro.

Due to many roads being closed, FairPoint crews could not reach a local CO (central office) in Pittsfield, Vt. to restore service to about 700 customers.

FairPoint reported a similar situation in the southern Vermont towns of Jacksonville and Readsboro where FairPoint estimates 2,000 have limited service, including the use of the emergency 911 system. The service provider advised affected customers who can't access the emergency 911 system to call their local police departments for assistance.

One of the worst hit areas in FairPoint's Vermont territory was west of White River Junction, which includes towns from Rochester to Bethel and Pittsfield, where up to 1,300 customers were affected. However, customers in Montgomery can make local calls while crews work to restore full service to over 700 lines.

Despite its initial efforts to restore service, FairPoint will likely have to play a waiting game in some parts of the state as over 260 roads and 30 state bridges either completely or partially shut due to flooding. Floods could continue through Wednesday as some of the state's largest rivers, including the Connecticut River, continue to rise.

For more:
- see the FairPoint release
- see this New York Times article

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