Different Strokes For Different Folks

from the overreaction-on-line-1 dept

Earlier this year, the FCC went a bit nuts after a few cases where 911 calls over VoIP didn’t necessarily work right. It then gave VoIP operators a tight deadline to implement E911 — much tighter than the years given to mobile carriers — but also made them get every customer to acknowledge that 911 over VoIP might not work the same as standard landline 911, or cut off their service. On Tuesday, a glitch in a Verizon facility cut off landline service to at least 150,000 people in Southern California for up to 12 hours — including 911 service. The city of Long Beach had to implement an emergency communications plan, including putting volunteer Ham radio operators in nursing homes so they could communicate with hospitals, and putting more police officers on the streets. So what will the FCC’s reaction to this 911 problem be? The gist of the FCC’s reaction to the VoIP 911 issue was that it didn’t always work like the landline 911 service people were used to. Not being able to get through to 911 because of a phone company snafu is equally as bad, right? Or is it just easier to score political points when you can blame a baby’s death on some flash-bang new technology?

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Comments on “Different Strokes For Different Folks”

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Ben McNelly says:

While we're in the mood...

Following the FCC’s logic, I stand a reasonable chance at holding anyone who deprives me of 911 capability at fault for it. Next time a big storm blows through and knocks the lines out, I am going to cut myself and try to call 911. Then sue the tellephone and power companies for not restoring my 911 service fast enough. Now, providing I dont get to cut-happy and bleed to death, I think I have a case!

DG Lewis (profile) says:

Re: While we're in the mood...

The telephone company has liability protection against 911 outages written into the original statutes requiring 911. So, as one of my professors said, “you can always sue — but you won’t win.” One of the (many) complaints VoIP providers had against the FCC VoIP 911 order was that it did not provide equivalent liability protection. (So if you did the same thing, but tried to call 911 using your VoIP phone and failed, you could sue your VoIP provider…)

Natholin says:

Re: Re: While we're in the mood...

I thought most States had made it possible to call 911 even from a phone with out true phone service.
Where I live you can walk into any house plug in a phone and diel 911 and get threw.
So unless the lines are damaged you can still dial 911.
During the hurrcain I had to go outside and plug my phone into the port located on the wall ( I have VoIP) All I did was plug the phone into the primary phone jack leading from the pole and called 911. It worked and I have not had basic phone service for about a year.

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