From the desk of Florence Webb
If you live in The parts of Landaff served by the telephone junction box near Town Hall or the one near Schofield’s house on Pearl Lake Road, you likely already know that telephones have been out in those areas since sometime on Saturday, December 23. This marked the second time in two months that substantial numbers of Landaff residents were without phone service for several days. A few things have emerged as patterns during these and prior outages of both phone and Internet service:
- Fairpoint representatives will take each complaint as a single-home residential problem no matter how many phones are not working;
- Fairpoint representatives will claim that each caller is the first and only complaint, even when you know others have already called;
- Fairpoint will not send repair people into Landaff on a night, weekend, or holiday no matter how many of us are without phone service, and whether the outage is part of a wider problem or not.
In this Christmas outage affected households have been able to call numbers outside Landaff, but not receive phone calls or voicemails. You say you thought your neighbors on Cemetery, Pearl Lake, Barrett Hill, Jim Noyes, Center Hill, Gale Chandler, or upper Mill Brook roads just weren’t home? Fairpoint has news for you!
This outage was reported to Fairpoint on Dec 23 and again on Dec 24. Today, when Richard Sagar called for an update, Fairpoint told him the problem is just his house and they would check into it on Friday. Ironic, since the Fairpoint repair people have been working on the box since yesterday and today have a tent erected over it in the subzero cold. Service was at least partly restored for a few minutes around noon but as of this writing (1pm) is now completely dead, no dial tone.
So, what should you do about it?
First: if you have been wondering why the kids never called on Christmas Day, you could be in the affected zone. If you are affected and have not reported it yet, please do. Fairpoint’s Customer Service number is 1.866.984.1611. If you can’t call from home, find a way to report it when you go to the store or to work or wherever you can get to a working phone. If you have Internet you can report an outage online at http://www.fairpoint.com/home/residential/contact-us.html. Look for ‘report a phone outage’ near bottom of page.
Second: tell Fairpoint you want a refund of your phone bill for every day you didn’t have full service. It may be necessary to get to a supervisor, which they make hard to do, but the more refunds they have to make the more likely they will clean up their act. So it may be worth the trouble.
Third: If your phone was/is affected by this outage, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know. If you called in a trouble report to Fairpoint, please tell us when you called them and how they handled your complaint. We will compile the responses and report back what the numbers and customer service responses have been.
In particular, let us know
1) whether Fairpoint acknowledged there was an outage or treated your report as a single household problem, including whether they told you you were the first or only person to report an outage;
2) what date and time you called and how soon they committed to address it; and
3) (especially) if the outage did or could have caused a real problem for you beyond the simple inconvenience.
3a) if you experienced or could have experienced problems as a result of the November outage please let us know that as well.
Don’t know about the rest of you, but our phone has transitioned this afternoon from able to make but not receive calls to totally dead, no dial tone. Let’s work together and share information to see if it is possible to get Fairpoint to deal more realistically with outages in rural areas.
*Note; from the desk of Sandy Brackett, that I have full phone service as of 2pm today on Center Hill Rd and Fairpoint has credited my account for the 5 days of loss on incoming calls.