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Rogers outage: House of Commons committee to launch investigation

Click to play video: 'CRTC pushes Rogers for answers after national outage' CRTC pushes Rogers for answers after national outage
WATCH: CRTC pushes Rogers for answers after national outage – Jul 12, 2022

The House of Commons industry committee agreed Friday to study the massive Rogers outage that left millions of Canadians in a communications blackout for more than 15 hours last week.

MPs on the committee agreed unanimously during a special meeting to probe what happened.

The July 8 outage affected Rogers mobile and internet users, knocked out ATMs, shut down the Interac payments system and prevented calls to 911 services in some Canadian cities.

The committee will hold at least two meetings by the end of the month and invite officials from Rogers, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Committee and Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne to testify.

Read more: Rogers outage sparks calls for telecoms to collaborate in emergencies. Will it work?

It wants answers about the cause of the outage, its impact and best practices to avoid future outages and to better communicate with the public during such emergencies.

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In an email, a Rogers spokesperson confirmed company executives will attend the hearings.

“We will work collaboratively with the members on the standing committee on industry, science, and technology to provide details on the cause of the outage and the actions we are taking to enhance the reliability of each of our networks moving forward, including through formal mutual support agreements,” the spokesperson said.

Laurie Bouchard, a spokesperson for Champagne, said his office was aware of the invitation and that they “will continue to collaborate with the committee.”

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In an email, a spokesperson for the CRTC said they would respond to an invitation from the committee “in a timely fashion.”

Champagne has called the outage “unacceptable” and directed the country’s major telecom companies to reach agreements on emergency roaming, assisting each other during outages and a communication protocol to better inform Canadians during emergencies.

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He gave them 60 days to reach a deal.

The CRTC is also investigating the outage.

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