Verizon, AT&T networks more than 95 percent working post-Sandy
UPDATED: The two largest U.S. cellular networks have confirmed that their networks are close to being fully operational, close to a week after Hurricane Sandy knocked out 25 percent of the U.S.' cell masts, crippling communications across the East Coast.
Verizon, the U.S.' largest cellular network by subscribers, and AT&T, the second largest, said today that their networks are close to being fully operational on the East Coast, days after Hurricane Sandy hit more than U.S. ten states.
While many remain without Internet access and have no estimate as to when their service will resume, cellular networks are beginning to operate semi-normally across major metropolitan areas.
AT&T said that nearly 97 percent of its cell masts in Sandy-hit regions are now operational. Also, more than 90 percent of its cell masts in New York City are running again, up from 80 percent on Thursday.
A Sprint spokesperson told ZDNet that engineers have "fully restored service" to Sprint subscribers customers in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Pennsylvania.
"Sprint's network in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut is now 85 percent operational, but engineers continue to work in portions of New York City, Long Island, Fairfield County, Connecticut, as well as communities in northern and central New Jersey, which were the areas hardest hit by the storm."
Meanwhile, Verizon said that 98.1 percent of cell masts in the U.S. north-east are now working, and that voice and text messaging overages will be credited to Verizon cellular subscribers in the New York City and New Jersey.
The cellular giant added that any late fees have been suspended, and that 93 percent of its Verizon Wireless retail stores are now open across New York City.
The news was reported in two Reuters news agency wires a short while ago.
Verizon senior vice president Robert Barish noted in the filing:
Verizon's wireless and wireline businesses have been impacted by Hurricane Sandy through a large portion of the Northeast. Verizon is currently directing its resources toward significant remediation efforts to restore communications services to affected customers, which may take some time. It is not possible at this time to estimate the impact that the storm and the required remediation may have on Verizon's operating results for the fourth quarter of 2012, but we expect that it could be significant.