ATLANTA, Sept. 6 (UPI) -- BellSouth said Tuesday damage caused by Hurricane Katrina to its network system could reach between $400 million and $600 million.
The local phone provider that supplies the bulk of the region hardest hit by the hurricane said in a news release that "it is too early to project the total magnitude of the destruction." Nevertheless, the company said preliminary surveys suggest about 810,000 lines being damaged while 19 of the 131 central hubs are still not operating. Combined, the 19 offices serve 187,000 access lines, 166,000 of which are in the New Orleans area.
"Restoration begins with our central offices and high-capacity trunk lines ... we are making steady progress as we gain access. Most customers will be restored within 30 days," stated Bill Smith, chief technology officer at BellSouth.