Chris Maxwell: AT&T above the law?
Our neighborhood, and it seems much of Nevada County, can agree that AT&T’s maintenance and disrepair of their phone lines is a major issue.
Over the past few years, we alone have had repairmen come out at least 10 times for either no service at all to water or static on the line. On some repair requests, we’ve waited a month just to have our service restored.
Each time the AT&T repairmen said their lines and equipment were in dire need of replacement. We have a monitored fire and security system tied to our land line. What happens when my phone is out of service during a fire, medical emergency, or break-in? What good is having our fire service at the ready to stop a fire detected early by a monitored alarm before it spreads or for our sheriff’s office quick response to a call for help?
Is AT&T going to be held responsible like PG&E on something easily prevented?
Our latest development is unbelievable, but true. Over the past week I’ve answered five calls from our sheriff’s office 911 operators asking if we are “all right.” During the fourth and fifth calls, I asked their dispatch what could be causing this? They said this is a very common problem (like in the 100s) and that water in these deteriorating AT&T phone lines causes a “false” 911 call.
Now, not only is all of our safety being compromised, but AT&T is using up our 911 resources by having the operators waste precious time determining whether this is a real emergency or not.
Calling AT&T about this issue is a “dead” end.
I believe our newly elected officials Sheriff Shannon Moon, Supervisor Sue Hoek and Nevada County CEO Allison Lehman have enough clout to tell the big utilities “not in my backyard.”
Chris Maxwell lives in Penn Valley.
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