Cell Tower Problem Leaves Customers, Police Without Service - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Cell Tower Problem Leaves Customers, Police Without Service

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JACKSON, MI (WLNS) - Is your cell phone your life-line? Many in Jackson and the southern parts of Michigan weren't very happy when they lost their cell service Tuesday night through Wednesday morning.

Due to a fiber cut at a Michigan cell tower, Verizon, AT&T and Sprint all lost service. It wasn't just the general public who had to go without it. Our 6 News Christa Lamendola went out to Jackson find out how city police dealt with the problem.

You don't have to look hard to see where last night's cell outage hit in Michigan. The Verizon map shows Hillsdale, Lansing and the center of the bulls eye, Jackson were all without cell service, including the city of Jackson’s police department.

“It was a little after 6 p.m. last night that we lost Verizon’s cell service here in the Jackson County area, which affected our computer systems in our cars,” said John Holda, Deputy Chief, Jackson Police Department.

Verizon says the disruption was thanks to a third party fiber cut in Bellevue, causing Verizon, Sprint and AT&T to lose service.

The department uses Verizon Wi-Fi to communicate with central dispatch, look up driving status and check for warrants digitally.

Without service, officers on the road had to go a little bit old school to get things done.

“We still have radio service communication like when I started, so not very challenging for our officers,” said Deputy Chief, Holda.

Those radios allowed officers to verbally check the system with 911 dispatch. The Jackson Police Department’s cell service was back up and running around 9 a.m. Wednesday and Holda says other than the increased radio chatter, the only major inconvenience from the outage was dealing with more paperwork.

Jackson police and the Jackson sheriff's office say as far as they know, there were no emergency 9-1-1 calls" impacted by the cell services being down.
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