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NCJ Number: 67623 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: UNIVERSAL EMERGENCY SERVICE NUMBER - THE PROBLEMS AND SOME ANSWERS
Author(s): L LOEVINGER
Corporate Author: US Federal Communications Cmssn
United States of America
Date Published: 1968
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: US Federal Communications Cmssn
Washington, DC 20036
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THIS REPORT FROM THE FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION DISCUSSES THE ADVANTAGES AND PROBLEMS OF THE 911 UNIVERSAL EMERGENCY TELEPHONE NUMBER SYSTEM OFFERED BY THE AMERICAN TELEPHONE AND TELEGRAPH COMPANY (AT&T) IN 1968.
Abstract: THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A UNIVERSAL TELEPHONE NUMBER TO SUMMON EMERGENCY AID, SIMILAR TO THAT USED IN ENGLAND FOR 30 YEARS, HAS BEEN DISCUSSED FREQUENTLY IN THE UNITED STATES, BUT THIS COUNTRY'S SIZE AND COMPLEXITY HAVE PRESENTED FORMIDABLE DIFFICULTIES. TELEPHONE COMPANIES HAVE ADVERTISED THAT INDIVIDUALS CAN CALL THE REGULAR OPERATOR FOR EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE BY DIALING '0,' BUT IN 1968 AT&T ANNOUNCED THAT IT WAS OFFERING A SYSTEM WHICH WOULD ROUTE ALL EMERGENCY CALLS TO A CENTRAL SWITCHBOARD WHEN 911 WAS DIALED. IT WILL TAKE SEVERAL YEARS TO FULLY IMPLEMENT THIS SYSTEM, BUT METROPOLITAN AREAS WOULD BE GIVEN IMMEDIATE PRIORITY. ULTIMATELY, ALL PAY PHONES WILL BE WIRED SO THAT 911 MAY BE CALLED WITHOUT A COIN. ALTHOUGH THE GENERAL REACTION HAS BEEN FAVORABLE, SOME POLICE AGENCIES AND OTHER INTEREST GROUPS HAVE COMPLAINED THAT THEY WERE NOT CONSULTED BY AT&T, THAT INCREASED EMERGENCY CALLS TO THE POLICE WILL HINDER THEIR ABILITIES TO REACT TO CRIME, AND THAT THE NEW SYSTEM WILL BE TOO EXPENSIVE. NO OBJECTIONS APPEAR SIGNIFICANTLY IMPORTANT TO WARRANT DENYING THE PUBLIC THE BENEFITS OF 911. AT&T ESTIMATES THAT ALMOST 80 PERCENT OF ALL EMERGENCY CALLS ARE FOR THE POLICE, AND THE NEW SYSTEM SHOULD ACTUALLY IMPROVE THEIR RESPONSE TIME. THE MOST DIFFICULT PROBLEM IS RECONCILING JURISDICTIONAL DIFFERENCES AMONG EMERGENCY AGENCIES. HOWEVER, THE SYSTEM IS NOT MANDATORY, AND EMERGENCY ORGANIZATIONS MAY CONTINUE TO USE THEIR CURRENT TELEPHONE NUMBERS FOR EMERGENCY CALLS. THE 911 NUMBER WOULD BE EASIER FOR CHILDREN, DISABLED PERSONS, AND THE ELDERLY TO USE AND WOULD BE MORE PRACTICAL IN SITUATIONS WHERE THERE IS NO TIME TO CHECK A LIST OF EMERGENCY NUMBERS. MOREOVER, A PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCED IN HANDLING EMERGENCY CALLS WOULD BE MORE EFFECTIVE THAN ORDINARY TELEPHONE OPERATORS. IF POLICE DEPARTMENTS PREEMPT THE EMERGENCY NUMBER FOR THEMSELVES, THEN THEY MUST BE RESPONSIBLE FOR DIRECTING CALLS TO OTHER EMERGENCY AGENCIES. THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SHOULD BE PREPARED TO ASSIST COMMUNITIES WHO DECIDE TO ADOPT THE 911 SYSTEM. NO REFERENCES ARE CITED.
Index Term(s): Emergency procedures; Federal Communications Commission (FCC); Nine-one-one (911) emergency telephone number; Police response time
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=67623

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