FCC Helps Carriers and Customers Prepare for Hurricane Irma

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The FCC has released two public notices geared towards aiding both consumers and communications service providers as Hurricane Irma races towards the United States and a loss of critical services seems inevitable. The first public notice contained the Commission’s contact information that communications providers – – including broadcasters, cable service providers, wireless and wireline service providers, satellite service providers, emergency response managers and first responders – – can use to stay in contact with the FCC Operations Center if they are needing assistance initiating, resuming or maintaining communications operations during the weekend. It also instructed consumers to report all service outages caused by Hurricane Irma directly to their service providers and only report consumer complaints to the FCC using the FCC Consumer Complaints Center webpage. The second public notice is directed towards communications providers facing a likely loss of service during and after Hurricane Irma and who will therefore need special temporary authority (STA) to continue operations. Specifically, the public notice contains International Bureau, Media Bureau, Wireline Bureau and Wireless Telecommunications Bureau hyperlinks and contact information that may be used by service providers to submit STA requests to the FCC. Eligible service providers include: satellite earth and space station operators, submarine cable operators, International 214 holders, television and radio broadcasters, multichannel video cable operators, and wireless telecommunications carriers.

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