UPDATE: Verizon cell service restored

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LANSING, Mich. (WILX) -- UPDATE:
A Verizon spokesperson has confirmed that all cell service has been restored in Mid-Michigan.

Verizon issued a statement after the service restoration:

"Verizon Wireless experienced a disruption in service for customers in parts of Mid-Michigan due to a fiber optic cable cut to one of our third-party fiber vendor's networks. The disruption was caused by an error made by the vendor, US Signal, during a renovation of the building that housed the fiber optic cable. This fiber cut caused disruptions to our primary and backup fiber paths. After discovering the problem, engineers were able to resolve the issue, and service was fully restored at 5:56 PM."

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A massive outage is targeting Verizon Wireless customers, particularly those using iPhones, across mid-Michigan Wednesday.

Reports of a problem first started around 10:45 a.m. Affected phones are showing "no service."

In a statement late Wednesday afternoon, the company said a fiber optic cable was cut by a third-party provider. Verizon said it frequently partners with fiber providers to carry calls, text, and data over their network to Verizon's.

As of 3 p.m., Verizon said there was no estimate when phones could be up and running.

Verizon is encouraging customers to enable Wi-Fi calling to make and receive calls. That service is free and can be activated under settings on your phone.

Apple owners can also consider using FaceTime over a WiFi connection as a back-up.

If there is an emergency, Verizon said, "when a cell site experiences interruption, mobile 911 calls will automatically connect to any available network regardless of the carrier to complete the emergency call."

Reports on Twitter earlier in the day showed people could not connect to the cell provider across the greater Lansing area. On the News 10 Facebook page, people said they also do not have service in Eaton Rapids and as far away as Hillsdale.

The website downdetector.com shows hundreds of reports of people not having service, with a large red dot over Lansing, indicating an unusually high number of reports of an outage.

This is a developing story. Please refresh for updates.