Local 911 lines back in service

Published 8:15 pm Monday, September 1, 2008

By Staff
Problem sprang from phone grid
Staff Writer
Area 911 systems were disabled for several hours Sunday afternoon, forcing local officials to switch to alternate numbers.
Officials said the problem originated in the phone system and affected much of eastern North Carolina, though it wasn’t clear Sunday evening exactly how far it had spread.
The system went down sometime in the late afternoon and came back online just after 7 p.m., officials said.
In Beaufort County, officials switched to a line that is normally used for administrative purposes, broadcasting the new numbers at the bottom of the screen on major local television channels, said Emergency Management Coordinator John Pack.
Hyde County officials rerouted callers dialing 911 to the county sheriff’s office and stationed emergency management officials at each of the county’s volunteer fire departments, said Emergency Services Director David Warren.
In Washington County, the director of the county’s Emergency Operations Center, Ann Keyes, called residents to let them know which number to call, said County Manager David Peoples, who was monitoring the situation via telephone while out of town.
Officials said they weren’t aware of any calls they had missed.
But Pack said word of missed calls might not immediately reach officials.