9-1-1 Awareness, part three

Where I live, I just turned thirty. Most thirty year olds are living in the 617 or 212 or 213 area codes but possibly are carrying cell numbers with 603 numbers. However if they call for an emergency, they would go to the closet PSAP where the tower is. There are people out there who “hate” the state they grew up. They won’t ever be coming back and sadly our PSAP is the most innovative in the country.

And even worse, no vendor doesn’t have the guts to defend our system, only to attack our lack of laws to protect troll attorneys if a 9-1-1 system is not properly configured in a business to sue the crap and put them out of business. I’m too lazy to pull up that Avaya blog post right now…

The reason being so innovative and nationally accredited; was given it supported an entire area code, that goes from border to border. Secondly the state waited for the entire state to upgrade to digital switching. In order for E-911 to work, those old Step By Step switches had to go away. Basically if you number couldn’t support Caller ID, then you still had analog (“electromechanical”) service. Anyways the other important core to E-9-1-1 is it’s two best friends ANI and ALI, an acronym of Automatic Number Identification and Automatic Location Identification. The information comes from a private database provided by the telephone company under state law. So this includes unlisted telephone numbers. (Well also so many don’t have landlines anyways so is this really relevant?)

As previously stated, the “telecommunicators” do verify number and location before proceeding to addressing the “emergency”. I say this in air-quotes because in the Thanksgiving snowstorm where the state left 300,000 electrical customers in the dark, people called to bitch about not having power. Regardless, the Department of Safety who manages this service takes every call seriously as if it’s serious.

You also have to understand domestic abuse situations where someone will call 9-1-1 but not talk or hang up. Domestic abuse has always been big deal in the dispatching world where I live, which again underscores the need to take the call seriously at all times.

Supplemental ALI is also an exclusive to the 603 area code. This the special friend for ALI for the special needs people. This includes people suffering with Alzheimer’s (who tend to walk and never return home, have anger issues); the autism spectrum disorder (who may become nervous for frightened by the sierens, or people of uniform, that could also runaway from home, or be non verbal or not capable of explaining an emergency); or people who might have oxygen tanks to help them breathe and have a fire going on at the home. No other state or PSAP supports this. People with special needs have to file a hard copy paperwork to their local police of which sends this to the state. This part of ALI is in the state’s database and not the telco or even the town. A town keeps a copy for their reference.

For office phone systems, Supplemental ANI can also push information to a PSAP via the telephone system’s database of cublicle numbers, conference room names, floors, etc. I can’t speak for New Hampshire, but other states have such mandate and it varies state to state or city by city.

More for cell phone users in a later post.

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