Great Plains Communications Residential Blog

Keeping Your Family Connected

Tag: Severe Weather

Don’t Forget This When Preparing for Winter

Winter storm Jupiter spread a dangerous amount of ice across the Midwest the past few days and left many without power. Living in this area means beautiful seasons, but with them comes severe weather. While most people have a list of winter essentials, a landline telephone is often overlooked. You’re probably thinking, “Well I have a cell phone, why would I need a landline?” We don’t blame you. Cell phones are great on the go and bring some of the best technology right to your fingertips. What happens if your power is out for multiple days and your family has drained all the backup battery packs for your cell phones?

Great Plains Communications wants to shed some light on just a few of the advantages to having a landline telephone this winter.

  • Security in an emergency, with consistent reliable 911 connections designed to continue working during a power outage
  • No need for batteries or charging when using a corded phone
  • Elimination of potential faulty connection and dropped calls
  • Top-quality sound and clarity

Remember, if the power isn’t working in your home, your cordless phones have a limited lifespan. Keep your family safe this season and make sure you have a corded phone plugged into a wall-mounted phone jack. That way you can be sure to have a clear and reliable connection no matter what Old Man Winter throws our way. For more information on how you can get landline telephone service through Great Plains Communications, visit our website or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and one of our representatives would love to get you set up today.

Is a Landline Telephone on your Summer Storm Safety Checklist?

The summer seems to just be heating up, and with that heat comes the risk of tornadoes here in the Midwest. Do you have a plan for when bad weather hits? Flashlight, check. Bottled water, check. Emergency blanket, check. Landline telephone, maybe not? You may be wondering why you would need a landline, when all the members of your family have cell phones. Cell phones are great on the go and bring some of the best technology right to your fingertips. But with cell phones come batteries that need power to recharge. So if the power goes out, those cell phones might not work through the storm. Below Great Plains Communications has listed just a few advantages to having a landline telephone.

  • Security in an emergency, with consistent reliable 911 connection
  • No need for batteries or charging when using a corded phone
  • Elimination of potentially faulty connection and dropped calls
  • Top-quality sound and clarity

Be careful of cordless phones, as they can lose power in a storm as well. Our recommendation would be to keep your family safe this season with a corded phone plugged into a wall-mounted phone jack. That way, you can be sure to have a clear and reliable connection no matter what the crazy Midwest weather throws our way.

For more information on how you can get a landline telephone through Great Plains Communications, visit our website or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and one of our representative would be happy to assist you.

Severe Weather Week Tips

How do you know it’s spring in Nebraska? Last night, March 23, 2016 the following were issued simultaneously throughout the state: Tornado Watch, Winter Storm Watch, Winter Storm Warning, and Severe Thunderstorm Watch. It’s Severe Weather Week, and Great Plains Communications wants to provide some important tips and procedures to help keep you and your loved ones safe during severe weather situations.

We provide local Weather on Channel 2 through GPC-TV, bringing you 24/7 access to up-to-date weather information. Weather on Channel 2 tracks weather at the national and local level via advanced satellite imaging along with the five-day forecast.

One of the most important factors to sever weather safety is understanding and receiving up-to-date warnings, such as the ones issued last night. Are you in a Watch or a Warning, and what does that mean for you?

 

Watch

A watch is just that, when the conditions are favorable for the development of severe weather and should continue to be tracked. At this time, it would be best to take precautions and make sure you have supplies prepared should bad weather arise.

Warning

When a warning is issued, severe weather is either occurring or impending. A this point, you should immediately take action to protect yourself, your family and your property.

To keep you updated, GPC-TV’s Weather on Channel 2 uses an easy to understand color guide alert in the case of severe weather. The feature will shift the general color of the channel to yellow if there is a watch issued in the area, and to red if there is a severe thunderstorm or tornado warning.

You must be a Great Plains Communications Cable subscriber to have access to GPC-TV and Weather on Channel 2. Check the GPC-TV website for a list of communities with Weather on Channel 2 availability. If you would like to sign-up or have additional questions, call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483, and a representative would be happy to help you.

 

Stay safe and happy spring!

Do you have a Landline this Winter?

There is a lot of beauty in a Midwest winter. A white Christmas is a special thing, and there is a certain feeling of satisfaction as you crawl into your handmade snow fort. Though anyone who has lived in the area knows that with the beauty comes some difficulties. Snow drifts can reach taller than your car and ice covers power lines and roads.

Most people have a list of winter essentials, but a landline telephone often isn’t one of them. You’re probably thinking, “Well I have a cell phone, why would I need a landline?” We don’t blame you. Cell phones are great on the go and bring some of the best technology right to your fingertips. What most people don’t know is that cellular towers are not required to provide backup power. So, when we get hit with a Midwestern blizzard your cell phone may not work through a power outage. Great Plains Communications wants to shed some light on just a few of the advantages to having a landline telephone this winter.

  • Security in an emergency, with consistent reliable 911 connections and the guarantee it will work through a power outage
  • No need for batteries or charging when using a corded phone
  • Elimination of potentially faulty connection and dropped calls
  • Top-quality sound and clarity

Remember, if the power isn’t working in your home, most likely neither are your cordless phones. Keep your family safe this season and make sure you have a corded phone plugged into a wall-mounted phone jack. That way you can be sure to have a clear and reliable connection no matter what Old Man Winter throws our way. For more information on how you can get a landline telephone, visit our website or call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483 and one of our representatives would love to get you set up today.

It’s Severe Weather Awareness Week

It’s Severe Weather Awareness Week and we’re making sure that our customers know that they have a great option for staying on top of storms and tornadoes.

If you haven’t seen GPC-TV recently, you may have noticed our new weather service.  It’s called Weather on Channel 2 and it provides 24/7 access to up-to-date weather information.  Weather on Channel 2 tracks weather at the national and local level to ensure that residents are able to see severe weather when (and sometimes before) it strikes.

The feature also uses easy to understand color guides to alert viewers of severe weather.  The feature will shift the general color of the channel to yellow if there is a watch issued and also to red if there is a severe thunderstorm warning or tornado warning in the area.

Plus, the weather featured on GPC-TV is the most local weather that you have access to.  We know how important hyper-local weather is during severed weather that may affect a small, but substantial area.

You do have to be a Great Plains Communications Cable subscriber to have access to GPC-TV and Weather on Channel 2.  If you want to sign-up, call our Customer Response Center at 1-855-853-1483.

Satellite Cable, Weather and You

Storm SeasonNormally when we talk about the weather in its relation to severe storms and disaster recovery.  However, there are products that can be affected by even wind and rain.  One of those products is satellite cable, which can lose its signal in even light wind and rain conditions.

The biggest problem is that unlike Fiber-based Cable services, a satellite cable signal must travel through miles of airspace before it reaches a home. When a signal has to travel over the air for  so long, it can degrade or be otherwise affected by the weather.  Land-based Cable services, such as ours, is largely transmitted over wire lines, which keeps the signal far more stable.

Given that Nebraska gets dozens of thunderstorms per year, the average satellite TV risks losing its signal for as much as a month a year!

Great Plains Communications spends a great deal of time and resources making sure that every channel we provide is crystal-clear and stable as possible.  Our Cable department is always looking for better ways to transport your Cable signal from upgrades to our state-of-the-art transport system to finding the best local network feeds.  We are always striving to be better.

When thunderstorms or blizzards come your way, make sure you have television to keep an eye on the storm, there is nothing worse than going to the TV to check out local weather and only get a  “looking for signal” screen.   If you would like to know more, we encourage you to call 1.855.853.1483

 

Summer Storms Easier to Handle with Landline

It’s a popular joke that if it’s snowing in the morning, sunny by the afternoon and raining again that night; then you’re in Nebraska.  While the day-to-day weather may be unpredictable, one thing Nebraskans can count on is severe weather including tornadoes, torrential rain, hail and more.

With severe weather season right around the corner, it’s time to take a look at how prepared you are when it comes to keeping lines of communication open and available should a tornado hit.

Severe weather, such as tornadoes and straight winds, is an annual fact of living in the Cornhusker State and can wreak havoc on electrical systems across the state. This severe weather can cause downed power lines potentially leaving residents without power for days, which can leave cell phones and computers out of power before the electricity comes back on.

A simple, corded landline phone doesn’t require electricity to operate, meaning it can keep you covered in the event of long-term power failure.  While you don’t have to have a landline to call emergency services, calling family members to ensure they’re OK or work to let them know of the situation, will require landline service.

During a power outage, a landline phone may also be the only way to receive information during a crisis since TVs, radios and other devices will be inoperable.  Those who rely on a cell phone as their sole phone device may end up stranded without a way to get in touch with friends, family and other contacts. Even a fully charged mobile phone or laptop will only have a few hours of power with regular use.

Furthermore, because cell phones operate using radio waves, they are much more susceptible to service loss during times of peak use.  If a large number of cell phones are trying to use the same radio signal to transmit a call, the calls become “jammed.”  Landlines don’t use radio frequencies and are much more likely to be able to handle the amount of call traffic an emergency generates.

When facing severe weather, you don’t want to have to worry about get in touch with people.  Find out more about landline service from Great Plains Communications at http://www.gpcom.com/residential/phone or by calling our Customer Response Center at 1-888-343-8014.