Jimmy Patronis reports major Verizon outages in Bay County, Panhandle - Florida Politics

Jimmy Patronis reports major Verizon outages in Bay County, Panhandle

Verizon Wireless customers remain largely without service in Bay County and the Panhandle, according to Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis.

“Citizens with family and friends in the Bay County and other areas severely impacted by the storm should not panic if they can’t reach their loved ones,” Patronis said.

“Verizon Wireless has massive outages. People in the area must stay off the roads and wait to hear from loved ones. Listen to local emergency officials and obey all curfew orders. Do not risk your life.”

Verizon issued its own update saying the company has staffed command centers, and that officials will assess which areas have been hardest hit by the storm.

“In the hardest hit areas where we are experiencing service interruptions, we are assessing damage and mobilizing pre-staged equipment and people needed for repairs,” reads the Verizon post. “Backup generators are running where needed and we are on standby to refuel generators to ensure our network facilities continue operating for our customers.”

The company is providing free calls, texts and data to all customers in areas affected by the storm once they get service.

The company has stressed it continues to monitor the storm as it tears through states besides Florida. The storm continues to prompt flash flood warnings in North Carolina and south-central Virginia according to the National Hurricane Center, and while it’s now dropped to Tropical Storm level (after the eye has passed through four states), it now threatens a region of the country still recovering from Hurricane Florence.

Patronis also Florida’s Fire Marshall, said the top priority for state officials in the wake of Hurricane Michael remains of public safety.

“My main focus is saving lives and the safety of those recovering and responding in the aftermath of Hurricane Michael.”

The storm knocked out power for 359,000 in Florida’s Panhandle as of this morning.

Meteorologists now report Hurricane Michael was stronger than Hurricane Katrina or Hurricane Andrew when it made landfall yesterday, according to USA Today.

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at jacobogles@hotmail.com.

3 Comments

  1. Here in Panama City Beach we have been told Verizon was bringing in a large temporary tower but the government stopped them. Is this true?

  2. They are out in the hardest hit areas? Whatever. Panama City Beach wasn’t hit that hard and we have been without service for 3 days! I called today and was told that they were unaware of any outages in Panama City Beach. The lady I talked to said that I was the first caller who she had talked to that said I didn’t have service here. She also said that I had unlimited calls, texts and data right now. OK, well, I don’t have service, so unlimited ANYTHING is WORTHLESS! I went out to sign up with another carrier today but all the phones are sold out. Verizon – can you hear me now? NOPE, because they didn’t prepare ahead of time like other carriers!

  3. Verizon are you serious?? As large as a company as you all are and the assets you all have, you should be ashamed of your self! Pretty bad T-Mobile and AT&T are up and running but you can’t get your network up??? Fiber outages?? Maybe true I’m sure but how about this little thing called “satellite backhaul”? I’m sure your slow process will be costing you all a lot of customers in the hard hit areas, let alone people in the rest of the country!

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