Company Agrees to Pay $1,050,000 Penalty and Implement a Compliance Plan

WASHINGTON, June 25, 2024—The Federal Communications Commission’s Enforcement
Bureau today announced a settlement to resolve its investigation into whether Verizon Wireless
violated FCC rules by failing to deliver 911 calls during an outage in December 2022, in
Alabama, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. As Congress and
the Commission have found, robust and reliable 911 service is a critical national priority.
Those calling first responders must be able to rely on their calls being completed. To settle this
matter, the Enforcement Bureau and Verizon Wireless entered into a Consent Decree that
requires Verizon Wireless to implement a compliance plan and pay a $1,050,000 civil penalty.
“When you call 911 in an emergency, it’s critical that your call goes through,” said FCC
Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel. “Today’s action is part of the FCC’s ongoing effort to
ensure that the public has reliable communications, including access to 911.”
FCC rules require wireless service providers to transmit all 911 calls to 911 call centers. On
December 21, 2022, Verizon Wireless experienced an outage that impacted 911 wireless Voice
over Long-Term Evolution (VoLTE) traffic in six states. The outage lasted for one hour and
forty-four minutes and prevented hundreds of 911 calls from completing through Verizon
Wireless’s network. The outage was similar to one that Verizon Wireless experienced in
October 2022. After the October outage, Verizon Wireless took action to protect against
further similar outages, but certain failures recurred, resulting in the December outage.
“The Enforcement Bureau takes any potential violations of the Commission’s 911 rules
extremely seriously. Sunny day outages, as occurred here, can be especially troubling because
they occur when the public and 911 call centers least expect it,” said Loyaan A. Egal, Chief of
the Enforcement Bureau. “We are committed to ensuring communications providers uphold
their responsibilities in providing critical 911 services to the American public.”
As part of the Consent Decree issued today, Verizon Wireless agreed to implement a robust
compliance plan designed to ensure future compliance with the FCC’s 911 rules and
implement best practices, including performing 911 risk assessments and establishing
enhanced processes for implementing security policy updates.

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