Today, Congressman Kevin McCarthy sent a letter inviting the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to hold a field hearing in Kern County, California, to explore challenges related to ensuring wireless network operability during wildfires.
Highlights of the letter are below, or you can read it in its entirety here.
“As you know, California has recently suffered some of the most devastating fire seasons in the State’s history. In 2016, the Erskine Fire in my Congressional District destroyed 309 homes and buildings, killed two individuals, and scorched over 48,000 acres. In 2017 and 2018, California experienced some of the largest, deadliest, and most destructive wildfires ever recorded, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.
“With wildfires in California continuing to be more destructive and deadly than in the past, along with Americans becoming increasingly reliant on wireless cellular devices, the importance of ensuring a robust and resilient wireless network is critical to ensuring communications remain operational during times of emergency.
“I believe that holding a field hearing in Kern County would provide the FCC an opportunity to learn firsthand from the relevant stakeholders to help inform wildfire-related recommendations in the Framework. I applaud your efforts to review and update the Framework and believe this will be an important step toward ensuring wireless network resiliency in California.”
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