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odinyvr
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 53
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2005 7:29 pm    Post subject: * Vonage 911 Service - Vancouver * ???Breakdown??? Reply with quote Back to top

I needed the police this afternoon and called 911 on my Vonage line.

The first time I called 911, the person who responded confirmed my address with me and asked me which service I required. I told them I needed the VPD. I was told that I was being transferred. I heard a click on the line, believing that I was still being transferred I waited for about 1 minute. Thinking the delay was odd for 911, I hung up and redialed. (2 Minutes)

Second call, same routine, transferred, upbeat music, (too upbeat when calling in about an emergency). I waited for almost a minute and again thought it was odd that my call was not being answered. I hung up and tried again. (1 Minute)

Third call, same routine almost, but this time I told the person answering that this was my third attempt at trying to contact the VPD. I was transferred and this time my call was answered. I could barely hear the person on the other end so I assumed it was the police dispatcher. I gave them the nature of my call but didn't hear them reply. I said 'Hello' a couple times, then faintly heard someone repeat back my problem and then asked me "and why are you calling me? This is a switchboard." I hung up and tried to call again. ( 3 Minutes)

On my fourth call, same routine, transferred to the music, I waited a little longer then hung up. (2 Minutes)

I used my cell phone for the fifth try and got through no problems. Police were here in about 10 minutes. (Could have been 8 minutes earlier had I not wasted 8 minutes messing around with the Vonage line.)

A few minutes after getting through to 911 my Vonage line rang. The person calling asked me if I needed the VPD. I told them I had already got through on my cell phone. I was then asked why I called an alarm company to get 911. I told them I had dialed 911 four times. I was told to get my phone checked. I asked where my call had gone and I was told "ADT??? or ATI???"

I few minutes ago I dialed 911 again through my Vonage line and spoke with the same operator. This person confirmed that they are a third party company hired by Vonage to route 911 calls. They would not identify the company they worked for. I named the company that the police dispatcher gave me, they wouldn't confirm. I was told by this person at the alarm company that they often encounter problems with the VPD and getting calls transferred to the right place."

I called Vonage CS and let them know what happened. The CS Rep took down the details and told me she would look into this. She also told me there are changes coming to 911 service in the near future, but for now she would try and find out what's happened.

I don't know if this is an isolated incident but the person who answered my 911 call at the alarm company told me that this an ongoing problem. Perhaps Vonage should let their customers in the Vancouver area know there are ongoing issues with their 911 service so that people actually needing emergency services won't waste precious time trying to get help from a dead end.

I was led to believe that when I dialed 911 that my call was routed to ECOMM but they wouldn't know where I was calling from. I had no idea my call was being sent to an alarm company. I'm glad I had my cell phone to fall back on.

I will post a follow up when I hear back from Vonage.

Cheers

_________________
Vonage User Since: Feb 07, 2005
ISP: Shaw
Vonage Hardware: Linksys PAP2-CA
Router: SMC2804WBRP-G

Last edited by odinyvr on Fri Aug 19, 2005 11:57 am; edited 1 time in total
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dcongrav
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Joined: Apr 21, 2005
Posts: 60

PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2005 9:15 pm    Post subject: 9-1-1 good experience Reply with quote Back to top

I live in Delta BC (part of the Greater Vancouver Regional District) and last week my brother, using the Vonage line by accident and not the Telus line, called 9-1-1 and was answered he said in milliseconds. On the other end they answered "Police". He reported the incident and was immediately informed that they had just received calls from the same area and they asked if it was the same problem.

The people answering the 9-1-1 call were courteous, had information of where he was calling from and already had information of incident on their screen. My brother's and my impression is WOW, what are people complaining about?

There seems to be a consistency problem within the same general area. The previous report shows major problems and our experience is very positive.
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odinyvr
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 53
Location: Vancouver, BC

PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2005 10:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Back to top

Maybe my experience was an isolated one, but I was told that it's not.

All four calls were answered promptly and politely. The person who answered knew where I was calling from and had knowledge that I had been calling.

It sounds like they're having problems getting through to the Vancouver Police Department, or at least through to the number within the VPD that takes emergency calls.

This is neither Vonage's problem or the third-party security companies fault, but it shouldn't take four calls and eight minutes to access emergency services either. Sounds like bad coordination/communication somewhere.

_________________
Vonage User Since: Feb 07, 2005
ISP: Shaw
Vonage Hardware: Linksys PAP2-CA
Router: SMC2804WBRP-G
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