13 Investigates


UPDATE: State websites still experiencing trouble after fiber-optic cables severed

Posted at 9:58 PM, Jun 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 16:40:48-04

NEW INFORMATION JUNE 24: Websites for several state agencies, including Department of Motor Vehicles and Department of Employment, are still experiencing trouble after fiber-optic cables were severed earlier this week.

Visitors noticed the websites were down early Wednesday afternoon. The trouble was confirmed by the DMV. A spokesperson for the DMV says there may be intermittent trouble throughout the afternoon.

The DMV also said that only their website is affected, not the services at its branches.

UPDATE 9 A.M. JUNE 23: The DMV tells 13 Action News:

The public-facing link for making an appointment works only sporadically. We are trying to determine the cause. All other online services and DMV systems are working properly. The offices are open.

UPDATE 7:45 A.M. JUNE 23: The Department of Motor Vehicles is set to reopen today after an outage yesterday, however the website to make an appointment appears to be off and on.

As late as 7:43 a.m. we were unable to book an appointment, but when we tried again at 7:47 a.m. it did bring us to the correct page. Click here for the page to make an appointment.

Appointments are required for all DMV locations in the Las Vegas valley to help maintain social distancing guidelines. The DMV says walk-in customers will be directed to kiosks to make an online appointment.

Officials say a fiber optic cable was accidentally cut by a private contractor at a construction site, causing outages on Monday for the DMV, the Department of Employment, Training & Rehabilitation, and other state agencies.

Engineers worked to reroute all the internet traffic, and things were restored by 3 p.m. Monday afternoon.

The outage happened as customers have already experienced frustration with new safety policies.

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) -- Frustrations reached another boiling point on Monday as several Nevada agencies suffered disruptions and outages after a fiber optic cables were accidentally severed in Las Vegas.

Authorities tell 13 Investigates, a contractor at a construction site cut the lines with a backhoe by accident during the day Monday.

"It's a perfect storm, there's a statewide IT outage in Carson City for an upgrade over the weekend and a lot of state agencies were affected," said Kevin Malone with the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles.

Before the cables were cut, hundreds of people lined up outside the West Flamingo DMV office for a spot in line.

Some tell 13 Action News they got in line before 3 a.m.

RELATED: Hundreds turned away from DMV due to new 'appointment only' policies

"We've been trying to get in online on our phones and it won't even let us in to make an appointment!" said Clayton Baty Jr., who has lived in Las Vegas since 1950.

"Now they're saying we have to make an appointment, nobody said that on Friday," added Baty Jr., who needed to wrap up a recent private vehicle sale transaction.

The DMV has moved to appointments only to cut back on the massive lines that formed outside offices which had little or no social distancing amid the COVID-19 crisis.

The cut cable outage also impacted the Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation, or DETR for short.

The department has been under fire for weeks for slow payment processing for unemployment benefits.

The interim director left her position last week after receiving threats against her.

"It's just our capacity, our bandwidth, our computer access, our phone lines, there's just not that much access for the amount of calls that we're getting," said Gov. Steve Sisolak during an April 6 news conference.

Gov. Sisolak has said more people have been added to process claims, but 13 Action News has received multiple complaints from those attempting to apply for unemployment or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, or PUA or short.

RELATED: Nevadans say headaches continue with unemployment claims

"I can assure you we do not have the infrastructure in place to process this volume, DETR has never received the funding it should have received, you could never have expected the surge in claims, anything like we're dealing with right now," explained Sisolak.

As for the Monday disruptions, 13 Investigates has learned authorities were able to reroute internet traffic and restore many online state agency services but a complete fix may not be finished until sometime on Tuesday.


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