4901:1-6-31 Emergency and outage operations.

(A) Each facilities-based local exchange carrier (LEC) shall design, operate, and maintain its facilities to continue to provide customers with the ability to originate and receive calls at all times. The commission will utilize existing FCC rules applicable to emergency and outage operations. Companies shall submit outage reports utilizing, at the company's discretion, either existing FCC reports or a format determined by the commission.

(B) Each facilities-based LEC shall submit, within two hours of discovery, to the commission's outage coordinator and when appropriate, the news media in the affected area, a notification that it has experienced an outage, whenever that outage occurs on any facility that it owns, operates, leases or otherwise utilizes and is both:

(1) Expected to last for a period in excess of thirty minutes.

(2) Potentially affects at least nine hundred thousand user minutes in the incumbent local calling area.

(C) Each facilities-based LEC shall report, by telephone or electronic means, a disruption of 9-1-1 services, which impairs 9-1-1 service within a given county 9-1-1 system, immediately to each county 9-1-1 public safety answering point, to the Ohio 9-1-1 coordinator, and to the news media in the affected area, when appropriate.

(D) Each facilities-based LEC experiencing a loss of communications or selective routing to a public safety answering point, as a result of an outage described under paragraphs (B) and (C) of this rule, shall also notify, as soon as possible, by telephone or electronic means, any official who has been designated by the management of the affected 9-1-1 facility as the LEC's contact person for communication outages at that facility; and the LEC shall convey to that person all available information that may be useful to the management of the affected facility in mitigating the effects of the outage on efforts to communicate with that facility.

(E) Each facilities-based LEC experiencing an outage described under paragraphs (B) and (C) of this rule, shall electronically submit to the commission's outage coordinator the same information as that provided to the FCC or the following information:

(1) A notification that it has experienced a outage, which shall include the name of the reporting entity, the date and time of the onset of the outage, a brief description of the problem, the particular service affected, the geographic area affected by the outage, the number of customers affected, an estimate of when the service, including 9-1-1, will be restored, and a contact name and telephone number by which the commission's outage coordinator may contact the reporting entity.

(2) Not later than seventy-two hours after discovering the outage, an initial communications outage report, which shall include all pertinent information then available on the outage and shall be submitted in good faith.

(3) Not later than thirty days after discovering the outage, the provider shall submit electronically a final communications outage report, which shall include all pertinent information on the outage, including any information that was not contained in, or that has changed from that provided in, the initial report.

(F) Each facilities-based LEC shall develop, implement, and maintain an emergency plan and make it available for review by commission staff. The plan shall include, but not be limited to, all of the following:

(1) Procedures for maintaining and annually updating a list of those customers who have subscribed to the federal telecommunications service priority program, as identified in 47 C.F.R. 64, appendix A.

(2) Procedures for priority treatment in restoring out-of-service trouble of an emergency nature for customers with a documented medical or life-threatening condition.

(3) In addition to the telecommunications service priority program, each LEC shall develop policies and procedures regarding those customers who require priority treatment for out-of-service clearance. Such procedures shall include a table of restoration priority, including, but not limited to, subscribers such as police and fire stations, hospitals, key medical personnel, and other utilities.

(4) Procedures for restoring service to priority critical facilities customers.

(5) Identification and annual updates of all of the facilities-based LEC's critical facilities and reasonable measures to protect its personnel and facilities.

(6) Assessments and evaluations of telecommunications facilities available to provide back-up service capabilities.

(7) Procedures for after-action assessments and reporting following activation of any part of the emergency plan. An after-action report will be written and will include lessons learned, deficiencies in the response to the emergency, and deficiencies in the emergency plan.

(8) A current list of the names and telephone numbers of the facilities-based LECs' emergency service personnel to contact and coordinate with in the event of any real or anticipated local or national threats to its ability to provide telecommunications service.

(9) A current list of the names and telephone numbers of the facilities-based LEC's emergency service personnel that is made available to the commission's emergency coordinator, upon request.

(10) A continuity of operations plan to assure continuance of minimum essential functions during a large scale event in which staffing is reduced. Such plans shall provide for:

(a) Plan activation triggers such as the world health organization's pandemic phase alert levels, widespread transmission within the United States, or a case at one or more locations within Ohio.

(b) Identification of a pandemic coordinator and team with defined roles and responsibilities for preparedness and response planning.

(c) Identification of minimal essential functions, minimal staffing required to maintain such essential functions, and personnel resource pools required to ensure continuance of those functions in progressive stages associated with a declining workforce.

(d) Identification of essential employees and critical inputs (e.g., raw materials, equipment, suppliers, subcontractor services/products, and logistics) required to maintain business operations by location and function.

(e) Policies and procedures to address personal protection initiatives.

(f) Policies and procedures to maintain lines of communication with the public utilities commission of Ohio during a declared emergency.

(G) Each facilities-based LEC shall amend its emergency plan in accordance with the findings identified in the after-action assessment report required under paragraph (F)(7) of this rule.

Effective: 01/20/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 11/30/2015
Promulgated Under: 111.15
Statutory Authority: 4927.03
Rule Amplifies: 4927.04