Phone Service Disrupted, No Major Outages - 1

FCC reports no significant troubles for both landline phones and wireless as a result of today's power outage.

WASHINGTON (AP)—Phone service in areas of the Eastern U.S. affected by the blackout was disrupted, but there is no word of major outages.

Ed Thomas, chief engineer at the Federal Communications Commission, said the agency has so far received no reports of significant troubles, for both landline phones and wireless.

Under agency rules, the carriers have to report outages affecting more than 50,000 subscribers within two hours, Thomas said.

He said most carriers have backup generators, and "the odds are very high that theyre being used right now because most of them initiate automatically."

Verizon spokesman Eric Rabe said there is congestion on the landline and wireless network because so many people placed calls after the lights went out.

He said the heavy volume meant some people got busy signals. Aside from that, he said the network is working as it should, and the backup systems have kicked in.

Rabe said if customers are having trouble getting through, they should wait several minutes before trying to call again.