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Computer Problems Bring DMV Offices to a Halt

Posted January 7, 2008
Updated February 12, 2008

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— Problems with a national computer system forced the North Carolina Division of Motor Vehicles to stop issuing drivers licenses and other identification cards on Monday, agency officials said.

A national computer system became overloaded in the morning and shut down the state computer system by 8:15 a.m., DMV officials said. Employees in DMV branches were able to continue working offline for about six hours.

Top DMV officials then decided to shut down its statewide computer system completely around 2 p.m., halting the issuance of drivers licenses and other identification cards for the rest of the day.

The shutdown was intended to help the national system recover, officials said.

Workers turned away customers from the normally busy DMV office on Avent Ferry Road in Raleigh all day. Customers complained that the glitch disrupted their schedules.

"It's very frustrating," customer Christine Lanning said. "My birthday's tomorrow. I've been out of town, I've been ill. So this was kind of a window in time, and it didn't work out."

"I ended up having to take a day off work," customer Michael Traner said. "I'll just have to come back tomorrow morning, and hopefully, at 8:30, they'll be up and running, and I can get my license and go on about my business."

For 16-year-old Kristen Brumbelow, the computer shutdown caused a glitch on her birthday.

"She was excited, ready to get her license today. And then we get over here, and it's shut down nationwide," Kristen's mother, Joy Brumbelow, said. "She was hoping to drive. We done got insurance and were all set and ready."

"(I'm) a little depressed," Kristen said. "I just gotta do it tomorrow."

State troopers and Raleigh police should take into consideration the predicament that the computer glitch might have created for drivers whose licenses expired on Monday or Tuesday, Lt. Everett Clendenin, spokesman for the state Highway Patrol, said.

If a driver does receive a ticket for an expired license, he should explain the situation in court.

DMV officials said they hope that shutting down the state's computer system will help the national system get back online by Tuesday morning. They advised customers call ahead before coming in to their local branch offices.

37 Comments

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  • ataloss Jan 8, 2008

    I was raised in Maggie Valley and cannot understand how such educated city folk can be so ignorant as to blame everything on illegals, yankees and democrats. I am sure there are some very questionable legal,southern born republicans at fault also. They system went down. DEAL. Everything breaks down eventually.

  • Travised Jan 7, 2008

    There is a national system called "E-Verify" to verify a potential employee's information (state card, SS#, Passport etc).

    However, here is the scary part, it is only 90% accurate!!! 90% is still swiss cheese for being accurate. Of that 10% that it misses... 5% will be caught; while the other half of the equation the other 5% will be INNOCENT with errors from data entry from a raw data aspect. Chew that over for thought.

    Wonder if this had anything to do with todays delay.

  • Arbi Jan 7, 2008

    Blame it on theose dam yankees.

  • Arbi Jan 7, 2008

    How about an explantion of what the interface is with the national computer system. I think its another case of the state thinking everyone is stupid.

  • goodboync Jan 7, 2008

    "Now than quote clearly demonstrates the need to improve the education system in this state. They done got their insurance but they done got deprived a good education."

    I don't think it shows a lack of education; it's just a part of Southern dialect. I hear some of the most educated people talk like that in casual situations.

  • Travised Jan 7, 2008

    I couldn't find any problems with other states DMV's or network slowdown. Sounds more isolated to the state computer system only...Unless they are digging deep on every one of us without telling (my conspiracy side shows).

  • denverbob234 Jan 7, 2008

    Kristen's mother, Joy Brumbelow, said. "She was hoping to drive. We done got insurance and were all set and ready"

    Now than quote clearly demonstrates the need to improve the education system in this state. They done got their insurance but they done got deprived a good education

  • the river rat Jan 7, 2008

    Were they moving?

  • ghimmy47 Jan 7, 2008

    About that "window of opportunity" person: um ... that begins when you get your renewal card in the mail and have WEEKS to go do it. This wasn't the worst glitch in the system. You should see the photo on my license. ( * _ * )

  • hawk_fan Jan 7, 2008

    I remember going to the DMV a few years ago, and the three employees all decided to go to lunch at the same time, leaving about 20 of us to wait until they returned. I had driven about 20 miles (closest to our house) so I just had to wait patiently.

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