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Phone, e-mail service restored at city offices

Phone, e-mail service restored at city offices

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City of Bryan phone and e-mail service was restored Thursday, one day after a contractor accidentally flooded parts of the Municipal Building basement, drenching the phone and computer servers.

Only the city's government access channel - Suddenlink Cable Channel 16 - remained down late Thursday. Officials said technicians would be working Friday to fix the equipment.

The phone, e-mail and instant-messaging services were disrupted about noon Wednesday when a contractor working along Texas Avenue apparently punctured an underground fiber conduit linking the Municipal Building and the Bryan Police Department, city officials said.

The contractor was working with water-cooled equipment, officials explained. The water flooded a part of the basement that houses the city's phone and computer servers, damaging several switches beyond repair.

The switches connect the communication network for Bryan police, the Municipal Building, two nearby libraries, the Horizon Building, the 911 call center, BTU and Brazos County government offices, officials said.

Bryan Information Technology Department employees managed to repair most of the connections late Wednesday.

The remainder of the work was completed by Thursday afternoon.

Two lines were dedicated to emergencies and urgent business transactions in the interim.

A Bryan spokesman on Thursday said Bayer Electric was working at the Municipal Office Building, but Deputy City Manager Hugh Walker said he could not confirm whether the company was responsible.

"We very much appreciate everyone's patience and understanding during this time," Walker said in a statement released Thursday. "We apologize to our citizens for any inconvenience this unfortunate situation may have caused, but we are back in business and eager to serve our customers."

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