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WEC presents speed test results in Washington, D.C.

Matt Boster

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Posted by: Matt Boster
Date: Jun 07 2019 3:44 PM

HARTFORD, Ala. — Wiregrass Electric Cooperative recently concluded its speed test survey, which was done in an effort to bring a more reliable internet connection to the Wiregrass region. WEC members were asked to visit a website to participate in the study. The data gathered includes responses from over 2,400 WEC members. At the study’s conclusion, Troy University Dothan validated the survey results.

The study, which was launched in March and ended in April, concluded that the median download speed was 6.1 Mbps, indicating that 50% of the respondents had download speeds below 6.1 Mbps. Furthermore, the median upload speed results indicated that 50% of the respondents had upload speeds below .8 Mbps.

“We were very pleased with the results from this test, and we feel this will help further our cause to bring a more reliable internet connection to the Wiregrass region,” says WEC Chief Operating Officer Brad Kimbro. “The test showed that our members are not getting the speeds they need.”

In April, Kimbro and WEC visited Washington, D.C., along with the Alabama Rural Electric Association (AREA) and other electric cooperatives from across the nation in conjunction with the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association’s (NRECA) legislative conference. Kimbro; other electric cooperative general managers from the state who are either providing or planning to provide broadband internet to their members; and Sean Strickler, vice president of governmental and external
affairs from AREA, met with the state’s federal delegation to discuss rural broadband.

They expressed the need for changes of the legal language regarding broadband at the state and federal level to ensure rural America is
not left behind. “We presented the results of our recent speed test study, which shows a need for a more reliable connection in our region,” Kimbro says. “We appreciate our members who participated in the survey and for Troy University
and Dr. Carmen Lewis, Associate Dean of Business at Troy University, for validating the results.

The final analysis of the data helped present the case to our federal legislators that the language does need changing in order for rural America to get its fair share of federal funding to bring a more reliable internet connection to
our communities.”

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