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Archive for Sunday, November 5, 2000

Sprint disconnect notices are false call

Billing glitch affects 20,000 customers in six states

November 5, 2000

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— Sprint accidentally sent disconnect notices to about 20,000 customers in six states who receive local telephone service from the company, a spokesman said Friday.

Sprint spokesman Bill Van Kirk said that no one was disconnected who should not have received a notice.

He said that the problem was caused by a computer glitch that accidentally charged people twice, causing the automated system to send out disconnect notices on Oct. 29.

The company discovered the problem early Monday when it began receiving inquiries from customers, Van Kirk said.

Van Kirk said Sprint checked every account that was set to be disconnected so that no one whose account was not delinquent lost service.

He said the company apologizes for any inconvenience this caused its customers. Sprint did not send out letters explaining what had happened, but customer service representatives can immediately tell people if they have received a disconnect notice in error.

"It they call inquiring, we can immediately answer their question and put their minds at ease," he said. "Since we're double-checking this, their service wouldn't be interrupted."

The company has 8 million local phone service customers in 18 states, Van Kirk said.

The states affected were Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, New Jersey, Kansas and Minnesota.

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