You can now read 10 articles each month for free on BostonGlobe.com.

The Boston Globe

Business

Cellphone networks overwhelmed after blasts in Boston

MIT professor says outage highlights need for upgrades so calls can go through during disasters

Widespread problems with cellphone service around Boston on Monday after the Marathon bombings put the limits of the nation’s wireless network into sharp relief, as the nation’s top carriers were unable to cope under the heaviest loads during the most crucial moments.

Verizon Wireless, AT&T, and Sprint were all overwhelmed by the surge in traffic, leaving many at the scene of the explosions unable to contact family or friends, and blocked other callers in the area or outside Boston from checking on those attending the Marathon.

Loading comments...

You have reached the limit of 10 free articles a month

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than $1 a week