Why did city's new wireless network suddenly go dark?

NEW YORK (WABC) -- Mayor Bill de Blasio was in damage control mode on Thursday, trying to explain how the city's new wireless network, that cost a half-billion dollars suddenly went dark Saturday night.

It knocked out the city's remote control over hundreds of intersection stop lights. The NYPD's electronic license reader system also wouldn't work. Instead of seeing traffic, the Transportation Department's Monitor system would display a message that the camera was being serviced.

"But it's not a good thing, and we need to fix it, and I believe in the next few days we will have it resolved based on everything I've heard. We have to figure out why this happened," said Mayor de Blasio.

The mayor says no critical public safety system was ever jeopardized, but plenty of people are not happy about this technical screw up.

"First of all, I'm angry I only learned about it in the media days after it went down," said City Councilman Brad Lander.
Lander is well aware the city was given heads up a year ago of a calendar reset in GPS, the centralized global positioning system, connecting computer networks around the world.
The question remains - why wasn't the city ready for it?

"If this is a mission-critical piece of software that's important to the city and it goes down, you got to let people know immediately, and treat it like an emergency and it's not a mission-critical system, then why are we spending $37 million a year on it?" added Lander.

Late Thursday, city officials said programmers are now working overtime to try to get the system back up and running.

They hope everything is fixed sometime this weekend.

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