TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Illinois May Require VoIP 9-1-1

Illinois May Require VoIP 9-1-1

Jack Decker (jack-yahoogroups@withheld)
Mon, 11 Apr 2005 11:03:45 -0400

By David Sims, TMCnet CRM Alert Columnist

The Chicago Sun-Times
<> is reporting
that Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich is proposing legislation to get
Internet-based phone providers to give customers the same kind of
access to 911 operators as those who use regular telephone lines.

In the back of everyone's mind is the incident this past February 3rd
in Houston, where 17-year-old Joyce John called 911 using Internet
phone provider Vonage to report that her parents had been shot by home
intruders. She got a recording telling her that access to 911 service
was unavailable. Help took more than 10 minutes to arrive. Both
parents survived.

It was later established that the Johns had multiple opportunities and
reminders from Vonage to activate Vonage's 9-1-1 service but had
not done so. In a blatantly emotional vote-troll, the Texas attorney
general sued Vonage after the incident, probably since you don't
win many votes suing registered voters who haven't followed
Vonage's directions on how to activate their 9-1-1.

The FCC warns on its Web site that it "may be difficult" for Internet
phone customers to "seamlessly connect" with 911 dispatch
centers. According to Blagojevich's office, that's because traditional
phone companies have not given Internet phone providers access to more
than 3,200 emergency call centers nationwide.

Blagojevich spokesman Gerardo Cardenas said the governor said the
companies need to figure out how to solve that problem. "We're not
getting into that debate," he said. "What matters here is when you
need police or an ambulance, it has to get there immediately."

[Jack Decker Comment: Texas is a SBC state. Illinois is a SBC state
(and we all know what they say about Illinois politics). Anyone
notice a pattern here?]

Full story at:

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