Franklin PUD gives public access to free Wi-Fi hot spots throughout county

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PASCO, Wash. — Franklin PUD Broadband is offering free Wi-Fi hotspots so teachers and students can have access to high speed internet. The hotspots are now up and running.

“The goal is to reach kids and families who may not have internet access or who don’t have fast enough internet speeds needed to complete homework during the COVID-19 distance learning. “We hope to continue expanding hotspots across the county. The signal can travel up to an 800-foot radius. It’s a very strong signal so users can stream video and perform most tasks you would at home,” said Ben Hooper, Franklin PUD’s Broadband Manager.

The hotspots are located in Pasco, Connell, Kahlotus and Mesa. They are available every day from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Users can log on from their mobile device or laptop computer. A password is not required. The hotspots will stay in place.

Here are the locations:

  • Memorial Park, 350 N 14th Ave. Pasco, WA Wireless Network Name: FBB_Public_WiFi
  • Connell Community Center, 211 E. Elm Street Connell, WA Wireless Network Name: PUD_Connell_Public_WiFi
  • Intersection of Durham Ave and W. Martin St – near the community pool Wireless Network Name: PUD_Public_WiFi
  • Bailie Land and Cattle Company, 205 1st Ave Mesa, WA Wireless Network Name: PUD_Mesa_Public_WiFi

The push for broadband expansion across Franklin County is part of the Washington Office of Public Instruction’s collaboration with the Broadband Office for WA State and local school districts to devise a plan where free Wi-Fi “hotspots” can be available in communities across the state.

“This is a great opportunity for Franklin PUD to really step up for the community during this pandemic. Ben Hooper and his team have been on the cutting edge of broadband technology for years now. For them to be able to deploy these resources so quickly is a testament to their commitment to our community,” said Mike Gonzalez, Sr. Manager for Public Affairs.

Health officials are asking users to practice social distancing while on the networks by either staying in their vehicles or keeping a safe distance from others. Log onto Franklin PUD’s HELP Page for other resources you may need during this time at www.franklinpud.com/help.

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