This subject is for consumers and non enterprise users. I will not talk about PBX systems, ACD telephones, and the stuff alike. Only to the Average Joe caller in my state of New Hampshire
Your humble Curator went to the New Hampshire Telephone Museum Friday evening for community events the facility hosts in their basements during the fourth Fridays of the month. That evening, a spokesperson named Wanda from the New Hampshire 9-1-1 discussed for over an hour about our system and how vulnerable many citizens of my state could be.
To start, if you think the 9-1-1 portrayals in movies and soap operas and other television shows where you call 9-1-1 and someone’s life will be saved in minutes; think again. The theme of Friday night’s discussion is that. 9-1-1 is not magical. 9-1-1 is not a perfect system. In my own words, 9-1-1 is clearly not magical and it’s not perfect. I’ve discussed 9-1-1’s move to perfection in the most illogical way in the past.
The bottom line:
- 603, my home area code and the only one statewide, has the lone Public Safety Answering Point. This PSAP is special and it’s been the most accredited emergency call centers since 1997. Oh and by the way, the 603 area code’s PSAP is the only region that serves one locale, one area code, and an entire region in the country. Maybe that’s why it gets so much credit.
- Only 3 cities in our state had 9-1-1 service before. Our three largest cities, Manchester, Nashua and Concord used it as a basic service. (Meaning no Enhanced abilities.) My town I grew up in was a seven digit number. If memory serves it was 432-1111 for fire/EMS and 432-1122 for Police. (I could consult my old photos for the orange stickers.)
- The project began in 1990 beginning as a commission to investigate, single PSAP for an entire state. Some towns opposed because of the lack of jobs after. Many towns have the police/fire turf wars. However everyone came to the table and implemented this system.
- On July 1st, 1995 9-1-1 went online on time, under budget, and earlier than expected for statewide emergency service. Anyways it took people my state several years to accept this system. To this day some towns are still encouraging to call locally, however you’re “blocking the line of communication”. Remember the said orange stickers so many towns had? They were replaced with our state shape and the former Old Man of the Mountain stickers with large 9-1-1 lettering once it went online.
- Even early on, the struggles with cell phones getting location was apparent, but with so many dropping landlines on both homes and businesss, nearly 85% of the calls come from non traditional landlines (i.e. cell phones!)