WAMU 88.5 : News

Outage Of Verizon 911 Line Under Investigation

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As power crews continue to work to restore power to hundreds of thousand customers in the metro area, there's another outage that's being investigated by Montgomery County, Md., Police.

Montgomery County Police saw a 134 percent increase in 911 call volume from midnight Tuesday through midnight Wednesday.

But, what's unknown is how many calls handled over Verizon's 911 wireless trunk line, didn't reach police. That's because there was a partial outage to that line and now Montgomery County Police are investigating.

Police say they want to know what happened, and they also want to why they weren't notified of the outage by Verizon Wireless.

"What we know is that there very well may have been individuals calling the Montgomery County Police 911 center from their wireless lines who were not able to make contact with our emergency communications center. This problem did not affect any one who was calling from a landline," says Lucille Baur, a spokeswoman for Montgomery County Police.

Baur says they learned of the outage after they received calls from police department call centers in the District and Prince George's County. Those call centers also experienced the same outages.

"The snow emergency affected power lines, affected our roadways, obviously had major affect on a lot industries, businesses. So we need to understand from them what occurred and certainly we want our community members to know what occurred as well," Baur says.

A statement from Verizon says they're looking into what happened and hope to know more soon.

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