NEW YORKVerizon is expanding its fleet with new specially-equipped service vehicles, designed to help businesses knocked offline by an emergency. The new service vehicles support Verizon Business' new Emergency Response Mobile Communications Service (ERMCS), according to Information Week magazine.

The service utilizes ERMCS vehicles with satellite links, and each vehicle in the fleet has VoIP phones and Ethernet access for laptops. The vehicles -- in 40-ft. and 53-ft. configurations -- have up to 24 individual workstations, and each station is equipped with a telephone jack, Ethernet port, and electrical port.

The emergency vehicles provide local, long-distance, and international calling services, as well as Internet access and fax services.

Earlier this month, Verizon Business introduced its 51-ft. mobile command center into the company's emergency response fleet. The mobile command center has a variety of sophisticated communications gear along with space for public officials, public-safety emergency responders, and Verizon employees who can work during events that require their attention.

Verizon ERMCS vehicles were pressed into service in hurricanes Katrina and Rita, as well as in other emergency situations when communications have been impacted or knocked out.