Fiona fallout: N.S. premier blasts telecoms for prolonged outages

Article content material

HALIFAX — The premier of Nova Scotia has issued a stinging rebuke to the telecommunications corporations that serve the province, saying too many residents are nonetheless with out cellphone service 4 days after post-tropical storm Fiona roared throughout Atlantic Canada.

Commercial 2

Article content material

It’s unacceptable that there are Nova Scotians who nonetheless can’t name 911 or join with family members, Tim Houston stated Wednesday in an announcement.

Article content material

“Nova Scotians have questions on when their service shall be restored, how widespread the outages are and what the businesses plan to do to make sure this by no means occurs once more,” he stated. “There isn’t any query we want our telecommunications corporations to step up and be extra clear.”

The premier stated the federal government had requested Bell Aliant, Eastlink, Rogers and Telus to ship representatives to the province’s emergency co-ordination centre earlier than Fiona’s arrival, however he stated not one of the corporations was initially prepared to co-operate.

“Eastlink, Rogers and Telus declined to attend the (co-ordination centre) in individual through the preliminary response,” the premier stated.

Commercial 3

Article content material

Bell Aliant, nevertheless, finally despatched somebody after the province complained to the corporate’s senior administration, however the premier stated the consultant left after two days to work just about.

The corporate issued an announcement saying its consultant needed to transfer off web site Sunday as a result of they needed to make their very own property secure, however Bell Aliant stated they remained related to the centre. “Each 911 and our emergency responder community additionally remained absolutely useful all through the storm and aftermath,” spokeswoman Katie Hatfield stated.

“We’ve additionally had a consultant participate in each (Emergency Administration Workplace) media availability and are dedicated to protecting clients up to date by means of the media, our social media channels, web sites, name centres and shops.”

Commercial 4

Article content material

On the peak of the storm, nearly all of Bell Aliant’s wi-fi and wireline networks had been operational and “at this level are near being again to 100 per cent,” Hatfield stated.

In the meantime, Houston stated he has requested federal Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne to carry the telecommunications corporations accountable for offering details about service outages.

“Different service suppliers have come collectively in an effort to ensure Nova Scotians have the data they want, but the telecommunications corporations are persistently lacking from the desk,” Houston stated.

“We’re calling on the federal authorities, because the regulator, to make sure that telecommunications are accountable for his or her efficiency in emergencies and clear with clients.”

Commercial 5

Article content material

A spokesperson for Rogers issued an announcement saying the corporate labored intently with the provincial and federal governments earlier than and after the storm hit.

“As impacted areas had been cleared from downed traces or timber, our native groups had been in a position to restore providers as shortly as doable,” the assertion stated. “We now have 99 per cent of providers restored throughout the area.”

As of Wednesday morning, greater than 104,000 properties and companies in Nova Scotia had been nonetheless with out electrical energy, which represents 20 per cent of Nova Scotia Energy’s clients. The outages, which began early Saturday, have had an impression on cellphone service as a result of the backup batteries in cellphone towers are dying.

The assertion from Rogers stated the corporate introduced in technicians from Ontario and Quebec, remained in fixed contact with all provincial emergency administration groups and deployed turbines to cell towers to maintain batteries charged.

Commercial 6

Article content material

“Our techniques routinely shifted calls throughout the community to reduce wi-fi impacts as a lot as doable,” the assertion stated. “With downed timber and poor highway situations, our crews are deploying as shortly as doable as soon as secure to take action.”

Poor cellphone service has additionally been reported in P.E.I. and southwestern Newfoundland, areas thrashed by Fiona with large storm surges and hurricane-force winds.

In Ottawa, Infrastructure Minister Dominic LeBlanc stated the federal authorities has been working with business to construct redundancy into Canada’s telecommunications providers.

“The extra common sense issues like backup turbines that would supply at towers or different important elements of the telecommunications infrastructure that redundancy, the higher we’re all going to be,” LeBlanc informed a ministers briefing.

Commercial 7

Article content material

“So the federal government of Canada accepts that now we have a accountability with that telecommunication sector to make sure that we’re doing extra, and we’re doing it shortly. ”

LeBlanc stated the federal government gained’t hesitate to contemplate regulatory measures if it concludes that business isn’t doing its half.

Immigration Minister Sean Fraser, whose driving of Central Nova was among the many areas hit by Fiona, described the dearth of cellphone and web providers as a public security concern. “We’ve to look at (it), each from a regulatory perspective and what sort of assist we will set up to strengthen the telecommunications networks,” he stated.

Defence Minister Anita Anand reported the Canadian Armed Forces now has about 600 troops on the bottom in Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland.

Commercial 8

Article content material

In the meantime, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Wednesday with shell-shocked residents of Port aux Basques, N.L., the place Fiona destroyed about 100 properties, dragging a few of them out to sea amid a record-breaking storm surge.

In close by Burnt Islands, N.L., which was additionally hammered by the storm, there was no cellphone service till Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Andrew Furey acknowledged there wasn’t web and cellphone service in some communities. And the realm’s provincial legislator, Andrew Parsons, confirmed there was no service within the distant neighborhood of La Poile, which is alongside the province’s south coast and accessible solely by ferry.

On Tuesday, NDP Chief Jagmeet Singh informed the Home of Commons that cell service throughout Atlantic Canada had been disrupted as a result of the telecom corporations had didn’t construct infrastructure able to dealing with excessive climate. Throughout query interval, he requested the Liberal authorities to pressure the businesses to enhance their infrastructure.

Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland stated the Liberal authorities was “working exhausting with cellphone corporations to make sure they provide Canadians the service they want …. (We) are doing the whole lot we will to make sure that everybody affected by the storm has what they want.”

— With information from Holly McKenzie-Sutter in Port aux Basques, N.L., and Lee Berthiaume in Ottawa.

    Commercial 1


    Postmedia is dedicated to sustaining a vigorous however civil discussion board for dialogue and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Feedback could take as much as an hour for moderation earlier than showing on the positioning. We ask you to maintain your feedback related and respectful. We’ve enabled e mail notifications—you’ll now obtain an e mail when you obtain a reply to your remark, there’s an replace to a remark thread you observe or if a consumer you observe feedback. Go to our Community Guidelines for extra info and particulars on the way to alter your email settings.

    Source link

    Related Articles

    Back to top button