East Coast Quake A Reminder Of Cell Network Reality - Forbes

"Relentlessly upbeat ads from wireless operators may have led U.S. consumers to believe the country’s cellphone networks can handle anything. But Tuesday’s East Coast earthquake, which originated in Virginia in the early afternoon and was felt along the Eastern seaboard, revealed the truth: cell networks still get congested when millions of people try to make calls at the same time.

In the hours following the quake, which rated a 5.8 on the Richter Scale, many people in crowded areas like New York City encountered busy signals when they dialed numbers."