Thousands without phone service due to reported cut line


ARENAC COUNTY — A fiber line is believed to have been cut somewhere near Omer and has resulted in an estimated 11,000 Verizon customers in the area being without cell phone service and around 850 CenturyLink landlines being out of service.

Interim 911 Director Yvonne King issued a press release Feb. 22 stating the cut fiber line results in seven Verizon towers from Omer to Iosco County being out of service. The earliest repair time is 7:30 p.m. Feb. 22, she said. Exactly where the line was cut was unknown as of 11:30 a.m. Thursday, King said.

“I haven’t had proof of exactly where it’s been cut, but there was a fiber line they’re saying was possibly cut near Omer,” she said. “Whether that’s at Grove Road, because that has an Omer address, the one in the city of Omer or on State Road, I don’t have exact information on that.”

Dispatch started receiving calls from the Au Gres-Sims School District Thursday alerting it of the issue, King said. The 911 center was able to communicate back to Au Gres, and people were able to call out from Au Gres using other cell phone service providers, King said.

“It’s only for Verizon cell phones and CenturyLink landlines,” she said.

People who have no phone service and need to report an emergency are being urged to go to either the Omer, Standish or Au Gres fire barns. Fire departments were paged and asked to have firefighters manning the station in case someone needed to report an incident, King said.

The Omer fire barn is located at 317 N. Main Street in Omer. Au Gres’ fire barn is at 320 N. Court St. The Standish fire barn is at 206 Industrial Rd. in Standish.


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