Y2K: The disaster that didn't happen

So far, all's OK on local Y2K front

Posted: Monday, January 03, 2000

Most Juneau stores and offices appear to be making it through the first business day of 2000 just fine.

Of 25 businesses and agencies called this morning, none reported any serious problems yet related to the Year 2000 computer bug.

``I had one strange e-mail message,'' said Fred Felkl, owner of Fred's Auto Service, ``but as soon as I cleared it, it was all back to normal.''

``Coffee pot works, too .... Knock on wood, everything's going good.''

Leanne Ng, manager at the local Carrs Quality Center, said the store changed all its computer equipment just last year when Safeway bought out the Carrs stores in Alaska, and that took care of any potential problems.

``We didn't have any glitches whatsoever,'' she said. ``It was smooth.''

Valley Medical Care Administrator Lance Campbell said no problems showed up with computers there this morning. ``Things look just really great.''

Family Practice Physicians also reported no problems.

Banks contacted said computers were running smoothly.

``It's a big snooze,'' said Nancy Usera, a spokeswoman for Alaska USA Federal Credit Union. ``I think like all financial institutions we've been working on this since 1993. Obviously every business did a lot of preparation and that's what made it a non-event.''

There were minor inconveniences at a few establishments.

Bill Legere, general manager at KTOO, said dates weren't showing up correctly on a few ``very old'' personal computers, but that was expected. Those computers are used for simple word processing, and there have been no problems with any systems involved in broadcasting.

Peter Mores of Shattuck & Grummett said that business also had problems with the date not resetting on a couple of personal computers, ``but it didn't knock anything out, no programs or anything.''

``We're on and up and going,'' he said.

Some businesses had taken precautions to make sure they didn't have problems.

``Last spring we put all of our computers through the paces and everything was fine,'' said Susan Hickey, an owner of Hearthside Books.

Kathy Wilson, manager at the Driftwood Lodge, said the software for the hotel system was upgraded in November, and there have been no problems so far.

At the Fiddlehead restaurant, bookkeeper Chris Florendo said a new register system had been purchased because the previous one was obsolete.

Dan Anderson, manager at the Douglas Breeze In, said that business installed also a new computer system last year and it was already Y2K compliant. So far no problems have shown up, he said. ``Even the time clock works.''

Kathy Smith, owner of The Button Shop, said her business had current computers and didn't have to do anything to prepare.

The Shear Design hair salon in the Nugget Mall was also doing fine. ``Everything's working dandy,'' said the manager, Jeri Laurine.

At city and state offices, business was going relatively smoothly.

``So far this morning no big glitches,'' said Bob Poe, commissioner of the state Department of Administration.

There were a few minor problems with city systems, said Anne Stadnychenko, the city's Y2K coordinator. One fax machine is reading the date as 1900, instead of 2000. A records management system at the police department had the opposite problem - it was reading the birthdates for those arrested as in the 2000s, instead of the 1900s.

``That's being corrected as we speak,'' she said.

``Everything else seems to have gone without a glitch. Our permitting system is fine. Our GIS, geographic information system, is OK, all the critical ones obviously are OK.'' Finance, personnel and administration computers are also functioning properly, she said.

``And the water's in the faucets, and the toilets are flushing.''

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