News10NBC Investigates: Frontier customers frustrated over landline repair delays

ROCHESTER, N.Y. Not a lot of us still have a good old-fashioned phone line, but those who do continue to report long delays in getting their lines fixed when they run into issues.

Eric Norden is what you would call a loyal Frontier customer. He has phone and internet service at his furniture restoration business in Rochester through the company and he also has a Frontier landline at home.

On Nov. 10, “the wire to the house got disconnected because a tree had to be taken down,” he recalls and while the tree crew put the phone line back up, it wasn’t working, so Norden called Frontier.

Norden says Frontier originally told him it would send a crew to his home that day, but a few hours later they called back to cancel, “they were saying, ‘oh, well due to unforeseen circumstances we won’t come out until the 16th,’” he tells News10NBC. “So I waited all day that day and nothing happened. They didn’t inform me about why they didn’t come.”

After the two no-shows, Norden started getting irritated, so he filed a complaint with state regulators.

“I contact the New York State Public Service Commission and they gave me a case number and they said, ‘well, you’re not going to want to hear this, but Frontier has a week to contact you,’” he says.

But still no call after another week. Norden has now been without a landline at his home since Nov. 10 and he’s not the only frustrated Frontier customer who has contacted News10NBC recently.

“My phone line was out,” recalls Lynn Harris, who News10NBC introduced you to last month. “I was told it was the copper wires in the box in the back and that he would be able to take care of it.”

Harris had the same issue with Frontier.

“Nobody ever came back though after that to fix it or call me back,” she said at the time.

It wasn’t until News10NBC called Frontier on Harris’ behalf that the utility got a technician out to fix her issue. A tech told her there aren’t too many Frontier employees anymore who know how to fix traditional landlines as most customers have opted for VoIP instead.

Over the past few months, the NYS PSC has taken an increased number of consumer complaints about Frontier.

“Frontier is such a big corporation that you’re just a grain of sand on the beach,” Norden says. “There’s nobody responsible or nobody’s held accountable or anything.”

After News10NBC contacted Frontier on behalf of Norden on Wednesday, a technician was at his home within hours and the phone line was fixed. A spokesperson for Frontier said “our team is en route to fix the issue” but did not address questions about whether there is a local shortage of technicians who can still fix landlines or whether the company is considering phasing them out.

To file a complaint with state regulators about Frontier or any utility, click here.