Car crash knocks out Comcast in parts of Mountain View

About 13,000 Comcast customers in Mountain View have not had internet access since Sunday afternoon because a car crashed and damaged a service pole, the company confirmed today.

A utility pole with fiber optic wires and shared service lines at Moorpark Way and state Highway 85 was hit Sunday afternoon, affecting internet at City Hall, Mountain View Los Altos School District and the chamber of commerce, among other places.

The pole was so damaged it needed to be replaced, according to Comcast spokeswoman Joan Hammel, who said 12,000 residential and 1,200 business customers have been impacted.

Hammel said Comcast repair workers had to coordinate with police and the California Highway Patrol to access the site because the crash happened right next to a highway entrance.

As a result, workers were not able to begin making repairs until about 6 a.m. today.

“Every single time something like this happens, safety is the utmost concern,” Hammel said.

Comcast has “redundant paths” or backup service lines, but those systems are mainly used to preserve phone and emergency response lines. Police said on Twitter that city government websites are down, but 911 calls have not been affected.

“While we all can’t ‘live’ without the internet, it is not technically considered necessary for life,” Hammel said.

A handful of residents reported on Twitter they had internet as of this afternoon, and Hammel said the company is aiming to replace the pole and restore service to all customers by 6 p.m.

Several residents who have small businesses or work from home said their revenues were being affected by the internet outage.

Comcast has been in touch with customers since this morning, according to Hammel, and will offer account credits to make up for interrupted service.

“When we have outages that are of this magnitude…we absolutely invoke those kind of credits,” she said.

— Bay City News