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Verizon: June storm response was insufficient

Tuesday - 8/14/2012, 11:49am  ET

The derecho swept through the area, leaving people not only without power, but also without 911 service. (Courtesy of NOAA)

WASHINGTON - Verizon is acknowledging widespread failures in its 911 emergency backup systems during a June storm that hit the Washington region.

A company report and Verizon officials say they didn't know the system was out in Fairfax County until the county alerted them. The report also admits problems with Arlington County's 911 system that the company had previously denied.

It also says drained batteries, faulty generators and a failure of staff to fully explore the problem contributed to delays in restoring full 911 service.

A Verizon official says the company erred in treating the problem as a service complaint rather than a large-scale outage.

Verizon is now auditing backup power systems throughout the Washington region.

The report is scheduled to be presented Wednesday to the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Tags: derechoverizon