Verizon's New Repair Method: Plastic Garbage Bags

For a while we have had a customer with some lines which go down every time it rains. We put in the trouble ticket, a couple of days later Verizon says the issue is resolved...until the next time it rains.

The customer sent us some pictures today of the pole outside their office. The repair appears to be wrapping some plastic bags around something up on the pole. Here is link to the pictures the customer sent us, in case anyone in the mood for a good scare.

Our neighborhood lost phone service when the pedestal at the end of the
road was annihilated by a flail mower....a WEEK AGO. The repair - orange
plastic bag over the entrails of the pedestal.

Yay Verizon - I finally understand why I send them so much money - stylish
orange bags!

If I didn't see the loops of electrical tape holding the whole works together I'd say that was a squirrel nest.

The two aerial runs that appear to be using each other to turn a corner (right above the plastic-and-electrical-tape mess in the top picture) is an especially nice and creative touch. I sincerely hope the smaller of the two aerials is not a lashing wire.

jm"well *there's* your problem"s

Shredded garbage bag(s) and pink bubble wrap...and some kind of tape. As if that wasn't scary enough, WTF is going on below that on the pole? It looks like some kind of cross connect box, but it's inside out and exploded...or maybe just missing a cover and someone pulled all the cross connects out to trace or make room to work.

What? That's totally legit. Look! There's even bubble wrap there for
cushioning! :wink:

What's the bubble-wrap for? Protection in case of bird collision?

Looks like they borrowed from Qwest's repair manual. We have a lot of pedestals around the city that are covered in Hefty bags. Granted, we're in Phoenix, and there isn't much here that is prepared for rain since we don't get a lot of it.

Justin M. Streiner wrote:

Can we all just agree that the whole pole needs to be restrung?

That's horrible!

You misunderstand the engineering that went into this project.

1. The black garbage bag was the original install. It has served past the self life and has become outmoded. You can clearly see the wind whipped ends that are to give it a nice cosmetic appeal.
  The plastic is breaking down and in dire need of replacing anyway, it is old. THAT is why the failure returned. I suspect if there is a 12 month history, you will see a similar issue in the past.
2. The pink, NON-ESD bubble wrap is an UPGRADE. It is approved for electronics use. They spent some budget on this! WAY more than the $.23 black bag. Not as stylish though.

There was clear and concise thought that went into this .... "ahem" repair. THAT is what scares me more than anything.


Can we all just agree that the whole pole needs to be restrung?
That's horrible!

Agreed, but Verizon and whoever happens to be on that pole are pretty unlikely to do that unless pushed. The NY Public Service Commission might find the state of what's on that pole interesting, particularly with supporting documentation (trouble history, pole number/location, etc).


Can we all just agree that the whole pole needs to be restrung?

Maybe it just needs a heavier garbage bag.

That's horrible!

We had a pedestal around here that was covered, I want to say for years,
though it might have been just a year or two, with a work tent. If you
have never seen one:

I particularly love "years of service in the field". I'm guessing they
don't mean *continuous* service. By the time it was eventually cleared
out, it had collapsed and was somewhat ripped, etc.

Totally unrelated: Some of the local DSL copper becomes really
unreliable in spring and when it rains.

... JG

+1 for agreeing needs to be restrung.

This made me laugh! Nice humor for the day.

But you know someone should call the utility company that owns the pole
and report it. Also file a complaint with your ROW division and
corporation commission.

Unfortunately, the lines are being resold by a CLEC. My understanding is the PUC/PSC doesn't take complaints from CLECs and, since the customer is customer of the CLEC, any complaints which are filed go against the CLEC, not Verizon.

Maybe you can hope for a wind storm to take down the pole or someone to crash into it, then they'll surely have to fix it.


Quality Union work!

I see Verizon is continuing to do quality work. Reminds me of some work they did by my parent's house once. Instead of splicing and burying a cable after fixing it, they just left it laying out in the open. But the tech did take the time to put bags over the splice cases he used.

Love the fact this tent is rated for FTTH work.

I assume they sell them as upgrades for any telco still using inferior
pre-FTTH copper-cable rated tents.


To be fair, this sort of thing does happen from time to time in
perfectly legitimate situations. In some cases, parts need to be
acquired or maintenance schedules need to be arranged in order to do a
propper repair. So just because you see these, don't immediately think
it is bad techs rather than a temporary, "keep it working until you
can do it right."

That said, I've seen more jury-rigging in my time than I care to think
about. Nothing like a temporary fix that is still in place five years

Actually, probably *not* union. And that's the problem!

Remember, Verizon has been "laying off" a lot of "old hands" and
making them become "independent contractors" -- so that it can
hire non-union under-paid workers.

A quick search shows that this has been going on for years:


   "Verizon To Lay Off 1,700 Workers After Paying CEO $22 Million Last Year"

"In 2011, the company�s shareholders saw an 18.8 percent increase in the
value of their returns. Workers, however, have not shared in those gains.
Verizon eliminated 26,000 jobs over a two-year period in 2008 and 2009 �
including 16,000 jobs in 2009 alone � and laid off roughly 13,000 more in 2010."

Temporary Fix + It Works = Permanent Fix