FCC Advisory – VoIP and 911 Service

Posted on Sep 17, 2010 in Jeff Nolte's Blog

Because VoIP service works differently from traditional phone service, you should be aware that VoIP 911 service may also work differently from traditional 911 service.

When you call 911 from a traditional telephone, the call is sent to a Public Safety Answering Point responsible for helping people in a particular geographic area or community. PSAP personnel can automatically identify your location and your telephone number so that they can call you back if you are disconnected.

If you have or are thinking of subscribing to a VoIP service, the FCC offers this advice:

  • Provide your accurate physical address to your VoIP service provider to ensure that emergency services can quickly be dispatched to your location.
  • Be familiar with your VoIP service provider’s procedures for updating your address, and promptly update address information in the event of a change.
  • Have a clear understanding of any limitations of your 911 service.
  • Inform employees about your VoIP service and its 911 limitations, if any.
  • If your power is out or your Internet connection is down, be aware that your VoIP service may not work. Consider installing a backup power supply and maintaining a traditional phone line as a hedge against VoIP failure.

Chesapeake can assist you with implementing backup power and enhanced 911 solutions for your business.

For related information, view my previous post on this topic.