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ddanz
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Joined: Oct 14, 2005
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2005 12:57 pm    Post subject: Maricopa County (Phoenix) Az Reply with quote Back to top

I am a 9-1-1 Operator, and I regularly test my Vonage 9-1-1 capability.

At first, three months ago, I got the (commerical) Northern 9-1-1 intercept center contracted by Vonage instead of the correct Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP). I didn't pursue with them how they would forward, but they did know the correct PSAP for my home location in Fountain Hills, which is the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office PSAP.

About 45 days ago, I was delighted Very Happy to reach one of my co-workers at the PSAP, and my call arrived on the 9-1-1 circuits, but without ANI/ALI (number or location) information. But at least it was not delivered on administrative lines. Exclamation

I just checked again. Dialing 933 tells me that I do not have E911 Sad , but dialing 9-1-1 continues to connect me on 9-1-1 circuits to the correct PSAP. So we're halfway there.

And to respond to OldSnipe:
Quote:
I'm 68 years old. I haver never dialed 911. There was no such thing over half my life.


I'm delighted to hear that you've never had to call 9-1-1 in your life. I hope you never have to, but then I also hope that - should you have an emergency - that you carry with you the 10-digit telephone numbers of the PSAPs for wherever you happen to be at the time you have an emergency, and that you're prepared to give the 9-1-1 operator information about where you are and how to call you back if the call is interrupted. I've personally fielded calls where the caller was incapcitated, could not talk or provide any assistance. Yet, using the E-9-1-1 information alone, I was able to send aid, and in one case very definitely it saved a person's life. When calling a PSAP on their non-emergency 10-digit numbers you should also be prepared for a longer answer time. At my agency, our call distribution system does not deliver the non-emergency calls as long as there are 9-1-1 calls unanswered. And we don't answer the administrative lines, either, if there are other kinds of calls.

If I'm not incapacitated, I certainly don't need 9-1-1 service for my Vonage home phone line. The phone numbers of all the local agencies are programmed on my cell phone and/or in my PDA if I can't remember the one that I need.

But it's not about me. It's about my wife, or visitors to my home, who might need emergency service. They see a phone, they pick it up and expect to be able to dial 9-1-1 and have the 9-1-1 operator know who and where they are.

So, OldSnipe, keep on hoping that you don't need 9-1-1 service. I hope everything turns out okay for you. Meanwhile, I'm encouraged that Vonage is progressing toward the eventual elegant solution of provided E-9-1-1 information.

But those of you with moving Voip service will also have to remember to tell the operator when you're not at your registered location. Just pray you're concious enough to give it.
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ChrisFix
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Joined: Sep 06, 2005
Posts: 282
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2005 2:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Dial 911 Reply with quote Back to top

OldSnipe wrote:
I'm 68 years old. I haver never dialed 911. There was no such thing over half my life. Didn't even have a phone with a dial on it for a 1/4 of my life. I don't see 911 as a bad idea but from past experience it would appear I could live without it. Apparently most of you folk sleep with a cell phone under your pillow anyhow. Is it really that important that Vonage directly terminate with Joe Fireman?


We all hope we never need it, but when it works correctly, it could literally be a life saver. With E911, if you make the call and don't, or can't, say a thing or get disconnected, they will have your address and dispatch the police. I also don't worry about it, but it would be better to have it than not - just like having a dial! Smile
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shaggny
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 2:39 am    Post subject: Must activate? Reply with quote Back to top

What I'd like to find out is whether or not customers have the option of passing on having 911. Why should we HAVE to activate it if we don't want to? I've looked through the site and forums and cannot find where this is an option that would satisfy whatever legal hoops Vonage is being asked to jump through.

Anyone know if this is an option?
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OldSnipe
Vonage Forum Master
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Joined: Mar 16, 2005
Posts: 249
Location: Bend, Oregon

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:10 am    Post subject: 911 Option? Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
Why should we HAVE to activate it if we don't want to?


Cuz... Big Brother says you should have it Smile He needs all the tax money he can get to support the millions in technology and staff it now takes to do what the telephone operator used to do for free. I'm paying a tax on my land line, a tax on my cell phone a tax added to my property tax and a special tax that was passed as a voters measure 2 years ago so that I can call the Sherrif or fire department with just 3 digits instead of 1. (0). Guess what tax will be added to Vonage once 911 is installed Question

_________________
Snipe
N 43.96674 / W. 121.35427
ISP: Bend Broadband cable connection
Modem: Motorola Surfboard SB5101
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Disturbed
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Joined: Feb 07, 2005
Posts: 129
Location: Stroudsburg, PA

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 10:51 am    Post subject: Re: 911 Option? Reply with quote Back to top

OldSnipe wrote:
Quote:
Why should we HAVE to activate it if we don't want to?


Cuz... Big Brother says you should have it Smile He needs all the tax money he can get to support the millions in technology and staff it now takes to do what the telephone operator used to do for free. I'm paying a tax on my land line, a tax on my cell phone a tax added to my property tax and a special tax that was passed as a voters measure 2 years ago so that I can call the Sherrif or fire department with just 3 digits instead of 1. (0). Guess what tax will be added to Vonage once 911 is installed Question


The government financed all of the lines and infastructure for Ma Bell. So, in a way, the phone lines and 911 are public domain, or part of the social system. We have all become used to such a system, and we have come to expect it to work, whether we are at a home phone, pay phone, cell phone, etc...

Tax dollars are needed to maintain such a system. Most people want such a system. As Voip becomes mainstream, people will not know the difference between Voip and landlines, but will still expect 911. Imagine what would happen if you dialed 911 from work because someone had a heart attack, but your employer decided that he did not want 911. You expected it to be there and it wasn't.

Now I do not like to pay tax. But a $1.00 tax to support such an important service is justified. All of the other taxes on a landline or cellphone are a bunch of bunk as far as I am concerned, but a tax for 911 is well justified.

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ddanz
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Joined: Oct 14, 2005
Posts: 12

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 12:52 pm    Post subject: Re: 911 Option? Reply with quote Back to top

Quote:
I'm paying a tax on my land line, a tax on my cell phone a tax added to my property tax and a special tax that was passed as a voters measure 2 years ago so that I can call the Sherrif or fire department with just 3 digits instead of 1. (0). Guess what tax will be added to Vonage once 911 is installed Question


Geez, I hope you're not relying on the operator to (a) know where you are or (b) to know precisely which agency will handle your call.

As a mental exercise, pretend that you have suffered a debilating TIA and cannot speak. You make it to your phone and dial 0 and then pass out. What happens? It's not like it was 40 years ago, where the operator knew everybody in town. The operator you reach is possibly in a different city or state. Do you think any action will be taken, unless you can explicitly tell this operator what's wrong?

Second part of the exercise. Imagine that you dialed 9-1-1 instead. What do you think happens then.

I can tell you: by policy at most agencies, if 9-1-1 operators don't get a satisfactory answer as to why a 9-1-1 call was made, they dispatch a police officer to investigate. This includes hangups with no contact (the bad guy could've force the hangup), no voice on the line (an incapacitated person), sounds of a disturbance in the background (domestic violence), or just evasive answers from a person who sounds like they are under duress in denying that there's an emergency. In 8+ years, I have received some passed-on calls from Telco operators, but NEVER under any of these circumstances, yet they regularly occur on the 9-1-1 circuits.

Incidentally, that's why you should NEVER hang up if you dial 9-1-1 by accident. Always stay on the line to tell the operator it was an accident. Otherwise, you could find an officer knocking on your door.
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OldSnipe
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Joined: Mar 16, 2005
Posts: 249
Location: Bend, Oregon

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 1:52 pm    Post subject: 911 Priorities Reply with quote Back to top

Sorry if I struck a sour chord DDANZ!

I'm not knocking 911, Just examining it's priority and cost. I carry both a GPS and a cell phone when I fish most of the summer. Very few areas I fish in though have cell phone coverage. It appears that most of the 911 calls in my neighborhood are concerned with someones dog barking or "It snowed last night and the snowplow hasn't been out here", type emergency's.

When they installed 911 they touted it as the best thing since CB channel 9. All it would cost was a buck or so a year added to your property taxes. That's now about 10 bucks because they of course had to "Modernize" the antiquated 8 year old equipment. Add a full time 911 administrator, give him office space with room for a large staff he needed to hire to help him administer. Add a 911 tax to the land line and cell phone. After all of that I still think I'm probably going to die sometime in the next 5 years or so as I'm getting old. I do believe 911 is pretty handy! Just not quite as essential as some folk seem to.

_________________
Snipe
N 43.96674 / W. 121.35427
ISP: Bend Broadband cable connection
Modem: Motorola Surfboard SB5101
Tel. Cachinkus: Linksys v-portal
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NateHoy
Vonage Forum MVM
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Joined: Nov 01, 2005
Posts: 2257
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 2:01 pm    Post subject: Re: Maricopa County (Phoenix) Az Reply with quote Back to top

ddanz wrote:
I am a 9-1-1 Operator, and I regularly test my Vonage 9-1-1 capability.


Pardon the stupidity of my question, but I've been highly trained not to call 911 except in a real emergency. How frequently (do you think) would it be acceptable to call? What would be the correct questions to ask to take MINIMUM operator time? How should I announce? "This is not an emergency, just a test of 911. Do you have time for a test?"

What would be the best times of day to call, when volume would be low and coverage would be high, in general?

I've never even tried 933, and I probably should. I assume that just gives me a recording telling me what service is available, and does not interrupt a real 911 operator?
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ChrisFix
Vonage Forum Master
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Joined: Sep 06, 2005
Posts: 282
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 2:22 pm    Post subject: Re: Maricopa County (Phoenix) Az Reply with quote Back to top

NateHoy wrote:

I've never even tried 933, and I probably should. I assume that just gives me a recording telling me what service is available, and does not interrupt a real 911 operator?


933 is a Vonage service that tells you the status of your 911 activation and has nothing to do with the real 911 operators. It is a recorded announcement that you can dial as many times as you can stand. Very Happy
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NateHoy
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Joined: Nov 01, 2005
Posts: 2257
Location: New England

PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2005 2:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Maricopa County (Phoenix) Az Reply with quote Back to top

ChrisFix wrote:
933 is a Vonage service that tells you the status of your 911 activation and has nothing to do with the real 911 operators. It is a recorded announcement that you can dial as many times as you can stand. Very Happy


Thanks. As soon as my local teleconference is done, I'm gonna give it a dial. I knew there was a number, and it's probably been mentioned to me 100 times in the emails, etc, but there's such a think as "crying wolf", and that's what kinda happened when I signed up and got inundated with Vonage's 911 information. 5 emails, multiple popups, 3-4 long screens of data I had to agree to, after a while it all mixed together and I was thinking I'd have to call 911 due to complete brain lock.

OK, I'm kidding, but I certainly did get bombarded with information. Can't call Vonage noncommunicative on that issue. Quite the opposite, in fact. (grin)
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