Verizon Removes Speed Caps for West Coast, Hawaii; Plans Unlimited Data Plans for Public Safety
Friday, August 24, 2018 | Comments

Verizon Aug. 23 removed all speed cap restrictions for first responders on the West Coast and in Hawaii to support firefighting and Hurricane Lane efforts. The nationwide carrier also said a new public-safety plan will feature unlimited data, with no caps on mobile solutions and will automatically include priority access.

The announcement follows negative publicity this week after Santa Clara County Fire Chief Anthony Bowden said in a court brief regarding net neutrality that Verizon throttled the California county’s data speeds during the Mendocino Complex Fire, hindering its response efforts.

“In supporting first responders in the Mendocino fire, we didn’t live up to our own promise of service and performance excellence when our process failed some first responders on the line battling a massive California wildfire,” said a statement by Mike Maiorana, Verizon senior vice president of public sector. “For that, we are truly sorry. And we’re making every effort to ensure that it never happens again.”

The carrier said in the event of another disaster, Verizon will lift restrictions on public-safety customers, providing full network access. The new unlimited data plans will roll out next week.

“We’ll provide full details when we introduce the plan next week, and we will make it easy to upgrade service at no additional cost,” Maiorana said.

The statement said Verizon customers have access to the company’s more than 450,000-square-mile 4G Long Term Evolution (LTE) coverage advantage over competitors. “In addition, we consistently show up in times of disaster to extend our network capabilities, provide our customers with loaner devices and provide customers of any provider with access to free charging stations,” Verizon said.

“We are proud to support the men and women who serve us all. First responders put themselves on the line each and every day. And every day, we are eternally grateful for their bravery and efforts.”

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On 8/29/18, Scot Fahey said:
The bill H.R. 4203 Emergency Responder Radio Communications Protection Act of 2014 amends the federal criminal code to prohibit knowingly interfering with the working or use of any radio frequency used by emergency response providers or obstructing, hindering or delaying the transmission of any communication over any such frequency. VERIZON should know this.

On 8/29/18, michael berg said:
This is the most egregious abuse of power from what was a public utility given taxpayer dollars to build their network.

Perhaps the president of Verizon should vacation in a fire hazard zone with one of his own devices.

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