Tip: Fix My Phone. No, NOW!

A 91 year old friend of mine, Lori, in Fullerton, Calif. called me Saturday morning on her cell phone to get a mutual friends new number in Oregon.
Lori’s birthday was last Thursday. Her phone with AT&T went out of service last Wednesday. On her birthday she gets a LOT of phone calls.
When she called me she told me what a mess things had been for her lately.
When people couldn’t get through to her by phone, they began calling her local friends who, had driven over and knocked on her door, and her neighbors, concerned about her welfare… not a lot of people make it to 91.
Two people had the Police come by to check on her.
Last Wednesday when her phone went out, AT&T told her they couldn’t get out to fix it for a week… next Wednesday, hence the mess on her Birthday on Thursday.
I told her that what AT&T was doing to her was illegal. In every State, when they passed the necessary Legislation/Taxation packages for 911 service, ALL States had included the proviso that Telephone Carriers/Providers had only 24 hours to repair/maintain service to customers. It is now illegal for telephone customers, all of which pay a tax for 911 service, to be deprived of that service for more than 24 hours.
She was stunned. She hung up and called AT&T recounting our “phone call from her friend in Florida”. The second she used the word ‘illegal’, the AT&T representative interrupted her to say they would have the problem corrected by 7pm (today, Saturday). The repairman showed up at 6:30, verified that the problem was upstream from the pole on the AT&T side, and reconnected her house line to a working line on a different trunk bundle right on the pole outside.
Her phone was in service by 6:50.
At 7:30pm Pacific, Lori called me back to give me an update. She asked me how I had known that. The answer is that I had phone service via cable by Brighthouse. My phone & cable service had gone out. I called and they had it working in 4.5 hours. Subsequently, I had discontinued phone service in that manner and later had another cable outage. When I called for repair, Brighthouse informed me that they would have the problem corrected in 3 days. I challenged her by reminding her of the speedy repair of my last outage. She looked at my records and said, “That’s because you had our phone service. By law, we have only 24 hours to get 911 service restored.”
Now YOU know too.

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