Shutdown of Indian Point phones has many questioning system reliability

The shutdown of the Indian Point phone equipment Monday has many questioning the emergency system?s reliability.

Westchester County?s Emergency Services Commissioner Anthony Sutton says Verizon crews shut down the phone system or Frame Relay system to make repairs in Putnam. The Frame Relay system lets counties operate the emergency sirens by remote control. Sutton says while the repairs are being made, all counties are to use a radio back-up system to sound the sirens if necessary.

Many residents and county officials are concerned that the back-up radio system will not work. In July, the back-up power supply failed causing generators to go down during a power outage. If the sirens do fail during a state of emergency, police officers would have to notify residents to listen to the radio.

Entergy, Indian Point?s owner, says the plant will remain fully staffed until Verizon fixes the phone system.

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