Hurricane Season & Your Cell Phone

Hurricane Season & Your Cell Phone

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Did you know that during a hurricane, your landline service may stay active while your cell phone service could easily go offline, perhaps for many days? I experienced a hurricane first hand — Hurricane Hugo in 1989 — several years before cell phones became popular. But, our home phone service stayed working all during the worst of the storm, a tribute to the solid phone network serving our Charleston, SC area community.

No Landlines, But Cell Phones

cell phone

These days many consumers have ditched their landlines in favor of cell phones, figuring that they don’t need the extra line and attendant costs with managing a home line. Cell phones can be wonderfully convenient, allowing consumers to talk on the go without being tied down to just one location. However, when a severe storm hits, cell phones can become undependable, especially if a nearby cell tower is rendered inoperable. Though in most cases damage is speedily repaired, you could be without service for several hours, days even.

Getting Ready For A Big Blow

Hurricane season generally runs from June 1 to November 30, meaning these months are the most likely time when a storm will hit. To that end, Verizon Wireless is offering some timely tips to cell phone users to help them get ready for this season:

  • Keep wireless phone batteries fully charged – in case local power is lost – well before warnings are issued.
  • Have additional charged batteries and car-charger adapters available for back-up power.
  • Keep phones, batteries, chargers and other equipment in a dry, accessible location.
  • Keep a list of emergency phone numbers – police, fire, and rescue agencies; insurance providers; family, friends and co-workers; etc. programmed into your phone.
  • Distribute wireless phone numbers to family members and friends.
  • Forward your home phone calls to your wireless number if you will be away from your home or have to evacuate.

If a storm already is on the way, Verizon Wireless suggests these tips:

  • Limit non-emergency calls to conserve battery power and free-up wireless networks for emergency agencies and operations.
  • Send brief text messages rather than voice calls for the same reasons as above.
  • Check weather/ news reports available on wireless phone applications when power is out.

Hopefully, if a hurricane does strike your area, the down time for your cell phone will be limited. Do your part to make sure that you’re ready for the worst of nature’s fury and you’ll be back on the phone as soon as your network is up and running again.

Source: Verizon Wireless

Adv. — You can get ready for hurricane season by stocking up on all of the essentials needed to keep your family fed and safe. Visit nBuy.com for all of your shopping needs including travel, home, car and school supplies.

Photo Credit: Kulo T

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Categories: Consumer Tips

Comments

  1. Bill Beavers
    Bill Beavers 4 June, 2009, 10:29

    Now this post offers a lot of great advice. I’m in California so we don’t have quite the emergencies people in other parts of the country do. I have been thru a few earthquakes, one where all utilities were down for 3 to 4 days. Keep the cell phone charged. That is something I need to work on. I don’t use the cell much so I’m a bit lazy about keeping it charged. Anyway, all great information. Thanks so much. All the best.

    Bill Beaverss last blog post..Laughing at Debt

  2. Matthew C. Keegan
    Matthew C. Keegan Author 4 June, 2009, 13:28

    I need to practice what I write, Bill! With a hurricane, at least you have one, two or three days notice, but an earthquake strikes without warning. So, I would think having a back up plan handy at all times would be the best approach given that a temblor’s severity can vary from one quake to the next.

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