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WESTERLY - Verizon wireless customers in the Misquamicut and Weekapaug areas of Westerly have a experienced some very poor cell phone connectivity in the past, but a new and improved antennae on top of the Westerly Police Station could serve as the remedy they have been looking for.
The tower was installed in late October at the request of State Rep. Samual Azzinaro (D - 37). Azzinaro lives in the Misquamicut area and said that his Verizon cell phone was reception was extremely poor, and sometimes non-existent.
â€śThe service has always been bad,â€ť Azzinaro said. â€śYou would always get a dropped call, and there were times I couldnâ€™t send a text out from my house.â€ť
This was frustrating, to say the least, for the representative, so when he met a Verizon wireless lobbyist at the state house in Providence, he inquired as to why the signal was so bad.
â€śLow and behold, the service at that tower was only data, not voiceâ€ť Azzinaro said. â€śIt didnâ€™t make any sense to me.â€ť
When Verizon finally agreed to upgrade the tower, there were both stipulations and obstacles.
First, the upgraded tower would not be full strength because of itâ€™s proximity to Connecticut. According to Azzinaro, the company had to avoid interfering with signals of other local service providers.
Then came the difficulties of installing the antennae, which were provided by mother nature. Verizon informed Azzinaro earlier this year that a family of osprey, a large, fish-eating bird, were calling the tower home.
â€śThey had to wait for the birds to fly the coop, which they usually do in October, and they did,â€ť Azzinaro said.
For more information, pick up a copy of The Chariho Times.