Verizon slammed for poor hurricane response as Floridians lack cell service

Verizon network still in bad shape—FCC demands refunds and will investigate.

Enlarge / A Verizon logo at the 2012 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. (credit: Getty Images | Bloomberg)

Wireless carriers' failure to fully restore cellular service in Florida after Hurricane Michael "is completely unacceptable," Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said today in a rare rebuke of the industry that he regulates.

Verizon, in particular, has been under fire from Florida Governor Rick Scott, who says Verizon hasn't done enough to restore service. By contrast, Scott has praised AT&T for its disaster response.

The FCC will open an investigation into the post-hurricane restoration efforts, Pai said. Pai and Scott urged wireless carriers to immediately disclose plans for restoring service, waive the October bills of affected customers, and let customers switch providers without penalty.

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