Maryland unemployment website fails after weekend launch

Hundreds of thousands of users were met with hours-long waits and technical failures after trying to apply for or complete weekly certifications for unemployment benefits Monday.

State officials apologized Monday afternoon, saying the new platform which launched Friday, was overwhelmed by the volume of users trying to access it.

The Baltimore Sun reports 334,000 Marylanders have applied for unemployment benefits since mid-March.

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In a statement, Tiffany Robinson, secretary of Maryland's Department of Labor said, "The launch of the new online BEACON One-Stop application was intended to offer Marylanders the opportunity to quickly and easily file all types of claims and weekly certifications entirely online 24/7. The launch of the site has clearly fallen short."

"It is frustrating to sit in a queue of hundreds of thousands of people," said Nick Wester of Anne Arundel County.

Wester says when he logged into the site Monday morning more than 300,000 people were ahead of him in a virtual line.

"I try to be as forgiving as I can with this because I understand that there is such a large demand," Wester said.

Officials said they would bring down the Beacon One-Stop site for maintenance between 1 a.m. and 3 a.m. nightly in order to solve the problems.

Monday night several people who waited as long as 7 hours to be let into the site told FOX 5 they were still unable to complete tasks on the site, receiving an internal error message.

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