Sunday, September 24, 2017 4:46 am Last modified: 4:37 am

Viya Advises Public of Emergency Preparedness Steps

Viya advises the public that in the event of a severe storm, hurricane, natural or man-made disaster, it is important that people tune in to local radio and television stations to stay abreast of weather conditions and updates from the company.

Chief Executive Officer Alvaro Pilar, said, “We encourage our internal and external customers to stay tuned to the media for weather updates and to advise us of downed lines in their neighborhoods.”

Customers should refrain from moving or cutting downed lines on their property or near their homes because they may be active power lines, telephone lines or cable TV lines.

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For those customers on the hybrid-fiber coaxial network, during a commercial power outage, the eMTA battery back-up for telephone will provide up to eight hours of talk time. Viya urges customers to use telephone service during these times on an as-needed basis. Customers who have generators or a back-up power source will be able to maintain service.

It is important for customers to understand that if they do not have an additional battery or a back-up power supply, the use of the telephone should be reserved for emergency purposes only to retain the maximum amount of talk time on the battery.

Viya encourages residential customers who do not have generators and multi-line business customers to discuss their communication needs with Viya personnel to determine if an extra battery is needed to ensure that communication continues in the event of a long-term power outage.

“Viya identified that there are batteries that no longer hold a charge in customers’ premises and we have been contacting them directly via automated calls to replace their batteries free of charge immediately. In addition, we have an ongoing media campaign to advise everyone who has been contacted to either visit the Customer Experience Center or schedule a visit to swap the defective battery. If the battery is defective, the phone will not be operable during a power outage or in the event of a disaster,” said Pilar.

Viya’s Customer Experience Centers at Tutu Park on St. Thomas and at Estate Diamond on St. Croix are open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. The Viya Center at the Marketplace on St. John is open Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. At the Customer Experience Center, Viya subscribers can obtain information on products and services, make changes to their account and address other operational matters. Customers may call Customer Care at 777-Viya.

For cable TV or phone repairs, Viya customers calling from landlines should dial 912. The hours of operation are also 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. from Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. Customers utilizing wireless phones to reach the Service Center should call 778-1742. Please have available the telephone number, statement number, address, description of problem and brief directions.

For assistance with high-speed data/Internet service, customers should call 777-Viya or 714-3700 directly for technical support assistance.

Customer Service is also available for wireless customers directly at 777-8899.

“We strongly encourage all of our customers to include the maintenance of their critical communication equipment on the list of things that they should consider as they prepare for the upcoming Hurricane Season. Just as we all keep spare batteries for our flashlights and radios, we must ensure that our eMTAs are adequately charged,” Pilar said.

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