Lightning strike knocks out Comcast cable - WKRN News 2

Lightning strike knocks out Comcast cable

Posted:
BRENTWOOD, Tenn. -

Comcast told News 2 a lightening surge caused by a lightning strike in Williamson County lead to customers being without cable service from between 30 to  45 minutes, Thursday evening.

Customers told News 2 they were unable to follow up to the minute storm tracking by News 2's storm tracking team.

Christina Kimmet and her children had to rely on relatives out of state to tell them where the storm was located because their cable service was not working.

"It is extremely frustrating," she said. "It scares me and it makes me nervous for my kids."

She continued, "I just want everybody to be safe."

Kimmet asked News 2 to get answers from Comcast.

The company has also had issues with its Emergency Alert System (EAS) freezing televisions on CSPAN.

"[Thursday night] was definitely not an EAS issue," Comcast Vice President of Public Relations Alex Horwitz said by phone. "Rather it was an issue caused by lightening surges around the Nashville area."

When cable service goes out customers will not receive the EAS alerts because it's delivered through the cable system.

"We have been working toward completing a platform upgrade so the EAS system would not be a challenge in the future," Horwitz said. "We are nearly complete with that."

News 2 also asked Comcast about customer concerns that the EAS message covers up to the minute storm tracking on News 2 and other local stations.

The Tennessee Association of Broadcasters has asked for an opt-out option so when the EAS message is activated the message will not cover local forecasters in continuous storm coverage.

"Right now the local stations do carry our EAS message alert, but in the future we are taking a hard look at if it makes sense for those local broadcasters to have to keep carrying those EAS messages," Horwitz said.

Kimmet said she wants Comcast to find a way to prevent power surges during future storms from knocking out cable and Internet service.

"If it is a power surge and they know it has happened in the past what are they doing to fix it," she asked. "The entire time the storm was in the area we had nothing no Internet, no phone and no cable."

Horwitz said Comcast customers experiencing an outage should call 1-800-COMCAST.

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