Telecom Collapse?

Skywing Skywing at
Fri Dec 5 03:25:15 UTC 2008

No POTS line here.  New office is all VoIP, too.  For my own use, though, I'm sticking with cell.  Don't recall the last time that there was an outage to the point where I couldn't make a voice call in the past few years (though I've seen EVDO data go down for my region and have had to fall back to 1xRTT for an hour or once in the past couple years).

Naturally, that doesn't really disprove a negative, but the chances of there being, all at the same time:

- a sufficiently localized disaster where I'd have to call 911, and
- a sufficiently broad disaster where the cell infrastructure had completely failed for all the CDMA carriers in my area, and
- nobody near by who could help or had a landline, and
- despite said broad disaster taking out *ALL* CDMA cell networks within range, a condition that still permitted landlines to operate

...seem to be quite vanishing to me.  Not impossible, but there's a whole lot more likely concerns to deal with than that, nowadays.  The only likely types of situations that might result in that, in general, would probably be things like wide-area hurricane-style events.  Those typically provide enough advance warning to get out of harm's way.  (Not that I would have to worry about hurricanes in the middle of the continental US, anyway.)

- S

-----Original Message-----
From: Chris Marlatt [mailto:cmarlatt at] 
Sent: Thursday, December 04, 2008 11:07 AM
To: Paul Stewart; nanog at
Subject: Re: Telecom Collapse?

Paul Stewart wrote:
> There's at least two cell phones in our house whenever the family is
> home and I have neighbors within quick walking distance.

That's assuming they're not doing the same thing you are, are home, or
are willing to let you borrow their phone. You're assuming a lot. I find
it surprising that many people replying haven't kept a 911 only POTS line.



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