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CenturyLink fined, penalized for 2013 San Juan Islands outage

OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) - Washington state utility regulators have announced a penalty for CenturyLink related to a 10-day service outage in November 2013 in the San Juan Islands.

The utility will have to give customer credits totaling $271,000, pay a fine of at least $50,000 and do nearly $3 million in infrastructure repairs and improvements.

The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission announced the settlement agreement on Tuesday.

A 2014 state investigation found the 10-day service outage resulted from a severed underwater fiber cable that separated the Friday Harbor switch from the CenturyLink network. The investigation also found that the company violated state laws and rules related to major outages and requirements for communicating outage information to the public.

The company could face a higher fine if he does not fulfill other requirements of the agreement, including rules about communicating with customers about outages.

In a statement, CenturyLink said technicians worked "day and night" to restore service to the islands and that it was reviewing the commission's order because it contained things that were "over and above" the settlement agreement.
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