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Tbaytel isolates emergency alert glitch

Engineers "have confidence" they can fix the problem

THUNDER BAY — Tbaytel and Rogers Communications engineers believe they have discovered the technical reasons behind two recent failures of the emergency alert system for smartphone users.

Most Tbaytel customers did not receive either last week's test of the national Alert Ready program or Monday's province-wide Amber Alert for a missing child.

Company spokesperson Katie Crowe says the investigation team has uncovered issues that "might be specific to the Tbaytel network, so they are currently working on implementing the solution."

In an interview Wednesday, Crowe cautioned that until the next alert is issued, engineers can't be positive the problem is solved, but said "we have confidence that we've identified the issue that was causing more of the problems" in the Thunder Bay area.

She said Tbaytel is unaware of any plans to hold another national system test before next year.

Crowe pointed out that regardless of whether the technical glitch has been resolved, some customers may not receive emergency alerts because of device-related issues. 

"You do need to be connected to an LTE network and you do need to have not only an LTE-capable device but the operating software on your phone needs to be the most up-to-date."