NEW ORLEANS -- Cox internet service was coming back for some customers Friday evening, hours after a massive outage hit parts of the metro area, knocking out access to thousands.

It wasn't immediately clear how long it would take for all service to be restored, but the outage happened after portion of Cox's fiber network outside the New Orleans area was damaged.

A spokeswoman earlier told WWL-TV that the outage happened about 1:30 p.m. Several Cox customers, however, said in social-media messages their service was out since the late morning.