SAN DIEGO (CNS) - Internet and telephone service for thousands of Southern California homes and businesses went out Sunday, as one of the largest Internet providers tried to repair a system-wide failure in its network serving part of San Diego, as well as Los Angeles and Orange counties and the Coachella Valley.
Time-Warner Cable engineers have been called in on the problem, which apparently began as slow service during the overnight hours and a complete, intermittent breakdown by 6:40 a.m.
A Time-Warner Cable spokesman, reached at his home in Maryland Sunday, said the data interruption is also cutting telephone service for some customers who use the Time-Warner line for dial-tone phone service. VOIP service like Skype or Vonage would also be cut.
"Because of the intermittent nature of the problem, we are advising customers not to unplug their modems to reboot them," said Jim Gordon, a Time-Warner spokesman speaking from his home in Baltimore. "We know that's unusual, because normally we tell people that the first step they should take in an outage is `unplug and reboot'.
"But in this case, unplugging a modem may result in total loss of service," he said.
Customer service workers in California told customers the entire Time-Warner Internet network was down. "We've been calling people out of bed to fix this, and we're getting calls from everywhere," one told a City News Service reporter.
Cable television service provided by the same company did not appear to be affected.
The outage came as the East Coast was hit by Hurricane Irene, and computer experts have in the past said that nationwide Internet systems can be brought down by single-point failures. No link between the storm and the California failure has been established, Gordon said.
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