Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency
Situational Awareness Statement
December 28, 2018 1:45 PM
Subject: Cellular and Landline 911 Continue to Experience Technical Difficulties and Sporadic Outages
Due to an ongoing nationwide issue affecting some household landline and wireless cellular carriers in Massachusetts, 9-1-1 calls made from either a landline telephone or cellular telephone may not go through.
The initial release of information regarding this issue this morning stated that the problem was confined to cellular 911 calls. However, updated information suggests that there may be a landline impact as well.
Callers may hear a fast busy signal, hear a recording saying “All circuits are busy” or something similar, or may get connected to a different emergency call center than they were expecting.
In Case of Emergency:
In an emergency, callers should always try to dial 9-1-1. If the call will not go through because of this outage, you should make a second call to the 10-digit emergency number of your local police/fire department. These numbers are available on the Internet and available through Directory Assistance. Remember, it is important for callers to give their exact location to the dispatcher as it may not automatically display for the dispatcher.
If you cannot locate your city or town’s 10-digit emergency number, please contact the State 9-1-1 Department at 508-872-2508 and tell the dispatcher the exact location of the emergency, including city or town, and they can transfer the call to the correct department.
Additional updates will be provided as we learn more about the status of the carrier outages nationwide that are affecting 9-1-1 service in Massachusetts.
Additionally, Text-To-911 service is available in Massachusetts. Remember, “Call If You Can, Text If You Can’t.” It is important that you send the dispatcher the EXACT location, including CITY or TOWN, of your emergency so the proper help is sent.
Utilize Massachusetts Alerts to receive emergency notifications and information from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency and the National Weather Service. Massachusetts Alerts is a free app that is available for Android and iPhones. To learn more about Massachusetts Alerts, and for information on how to download the free app onto your smartphone, visit:http://www.mass.gov/service-details/massachusetts-alerts-smartphone-app.
Utilize MEMA’s real-time power outage viewer to stay informed about current power outages in your community and region, and across the state, including information from utility companies about restoration times:
Utilize MEMA’s live weather radar and forecasting tools: http://www.mass.gov/map-resources
For additional information and resources, visit:
Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency at www.mass.gov/mema
MEMA's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/MassachusettsEMA
MEMA Twitter: @MassEMA
Federal Emergency Management Agency at www.fema.gov
National Weather Service Boston/Norton at www.weather.gov/boston
National Weather Service Albany, NY at www.weather.gov/albany
National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center: http://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov
National Weather Service Storm Prediction Center: http://www.spc.noaa.gov/
Mass211 at www.mass211.org