Statewide DMV outage hits thousands in California

The failure at DMV offices was traced to router problems with AT&T and Verizon

Two independent networking problems took computers offline at Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) offices across California on Tuesday, causing problems for thousands of people.

An early morning router reconfiguration by AT&T disrupted connectivity between the carrier and several California state networks, including that of the DMV, said Jan Mendoza, a spokeswoman for the California DMV. A second problem occurred when a DMV router that handled connections with Verizon Communications suffered problems that hit communications on a second link.

Services returned to normal around noon, Mendoza said.

During the outage, the DMV offices continued conducting driving tests. Customers who had simple requirements had their issues handled by paper, but those with more complex applications requiring immediate computer processing were asked to come back another day.

The outage is the latest in a string of computer problems at the California DMV. Problems were also experienced in March, May and July of this year, but it's not clear if there is a link between Tuesday's failures and those previous glitches.

The DMV's website was not affected by the outages.

Martyn Williams covers mobile telecoms, Silicon Valley and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Martyn on Twitter at @martyn_williams. Martyn's e-mail address is martyn_williams@idg.com

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