I’m a #CampFire survivor. It’s been almost exactly a year since the town of Paradise burned. 90% of Paradise is gone. My town also burned, about 30%.

Recently, as a result of that fire, PG&E started implementing Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS). That was when I realized I had no working landline because it was bundled with my internet when all the customers up here were switched over to U-Verse. That meant that once the power went off, and once the backup internet battery died after 2 hours, I was in a total power/phone blackout. This becomes problematic because I would no longer receive the alerts or warnings that Code Red or PG&E send out.

When the power came back on I attempted to call AT&T to request my land line be separated from my internet line. The first try, the office was closed. The second try, I went through 5 customer service representatives who couldn’t help me. One rep said to switch me back to DSL would cost me $86/month just for local calls! When I asked her why it was so expensive, she said “our costs have gone up.” I told her a lawsuit would be more expensive! The last one told me I would get a callback from a manager in 20 minutes. That was an hour ago.

At this point I’m waiting to see if they follow through, but I can say this much: I will certainly be part of any class action for damages as a result of their failure to address working phone lines during emergencies, especially in a high fire area like mine. I already got lucky from the first fire, I don’t want to push my luck.

~ by irishgrl on October 22, 2019.

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