Responders get access in blackout

Priority services operated by the National Communications System gave government officials and emergency personnel access to both landline and wireless telecommunications during the blackout that shut down parts of the Northeast.

Although most of the telecommunications infrastructure remained in operation during the blackout, usage spikes overwhelmed resources, making access difficult. The Government Emergency Telecommunications Service for landline phones, and the Wireless Priority Service for cellular phones both worked, providing service to government employees, according to program director John Graves.

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