A contractor apparently hit underground AT&T lines at Jefferson Street and Lincoln Avenue, knocking out phone service Wednesday afternoon to as many as 1,800 phone and high-speed Internet customers, according to city and AT&T representatives.
Affected customers were “north of Lincoln, east of Highway 29 and west of Villa Lane,” according to AT&T.
Nearby businesses did not lose phone service but others, farther away, did, including Queen of the Valley Medical Center’s Community Outreach office on Villa Lane. Calls to Community Outreach had to be forwarded to the hospital's main phone number, said hospital spokeswoman Vanessa deGier.
AT&T spokesman John Britton said AT&T started receiving complaints from customers at 1 p.m.
Turn lanes on Jefferson and Lincoln are expected to be blocked for up to five days as AT&T crews make the repairs, said Mark Tomko, senior civil engineer for the city of Napa.
Britton said AT&T’s priority is to restore customer service. “We will be working around the clock,” Britton said.
The four nipped cables lay about 3 feet under the street surface near the southeast corner of the Lincoln-Jefferson intersection.
Each of the four large cables contains between 900 and 2,100 lines, according to AT&T. Not all of the severed lines were in service, Britton said.
Crews have begun repairs, going into manholes to pull 600 feet of new cable, Britton explained. Each customer has a “talk” and “receive” line. Crews will have to “splice” together the lines, two at a time, to restore service to each customer, according to AT&T.
There was no word Thursday morning as to how fast AT&T customers would begin to have their phone service restored.
The city-hired contractor, Redding-based Terry Hansen Electric Co., is installing the conduit for cables to coordinate traffic signal between California Boulevard and Soscol Avenue.
In late August, the same contractor damaged a gas line on the south side of Lincoln near Pacific Street as part of the same project, according to the city. Nearby residents were asked to stay inside, with all windows shut, as Pacific Gas and Electric Co. crews repaired the gas line.
The conduit is being installed from California Boulevard to the city of Napa Corporation Yard on Jackson Street as part of the “Lincoln signal interconnect and restriping project,” according to the city.
In May, the city awarded a $231,628 contract to Terry Hansen Electric. The project includes the installation of the conduit, signal interconnect cable, fiber optic cable, and the restriping of Lincoln Avenue for bike lanes, according to the city.
AT&T has revised upward the number of affected customers since this story's first posting.