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National 911 Outages Caused by Cell Network Problems

Many mobile phone customers received automated alerts Monday about 911 service issues urging them to use alternate phones if calls were not going through. The problem was linked to network issues with certain carriers.

by Jeff Weiner, Orlando Sentinel / June 16, 2020

(TNS) — Outages of 911 service, apparently due to network issues with certain cell phone carriers, were reported across the country on Monday.

Many mobile phone customers received automated alerts about 911 service issues, while local governments in Central Florida and elsewhere issued their own warnings and instructions for how to reach police.

“If you have difficulty calling 9-1-1, try a different phone,” an alert sent by Orange County said. “There are reported outages across Florida.”

The Orange County Sheriff’s Office said it has not been directly impacted by the outages but said dispatchers were having difficulty calling people back if they are disconnected. People can also call the non-emergency line at 407-836-4357.

Said the Kissimmee Police Department on Twitter: “Some cell phone carriers are reporting network issues, including problems calling 9-1-1. If you need KPD, we can receive texts to 9-1-1 or try calling our non-emergency number at 407-846-3333.”

The Orlando Police Department also directed people in need of help to call its non-emergency number if calling 911 doesn’t work. That number is 321-235-5300. The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office said people should call 407-665-6650 if emergency assistance is needed.

The website Down Detector, which tracks network outages, reported widespread issues with T-Mobile service on Monday afternoon, with pockets of outages detected across the country.

“Our engineers are working to resolve a widespread routing issue affecting voice & text," the company tweeted. “Customers may experience longer care wait times. Please try third-party calling apps (FaceTime, WhatsApp, Signal) as a temp solution.”

©2020 The Orlando Sentinel (Orlando, Fla.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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