This press release is being distributed on behalf of Southeastern Arizona Communications (SEACOM).
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has announced that 10-digit dialing will be required for local calls starting Oct. 24, 2021 and encourages callers to begin using their three-digit area code on local calls now.
Southeastern Arizona Communications (SEACOM) reminds residents that emergency services will still be reached by dialing 9-1-1 after seven-digit dialing for local calls ends on Oct. 24, 2021. Residents will also still be able to use other three-digit dialing services like 7-1-1.
The transition is needed due to the designation of 9-8-8 as the new nationwide three-digit suicide and mental health crisis hotline effective July 16, 2022. Any area code with the 988 prefix must be transitioned to 10-digit local dialing to ensure everyone is able to reach the National Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis Lifeline using the 3-digit 988 code. After Oct. 24, 2021 local calls dialed with only seven digits will be met with a recording stating the call cannot be completed as dialed.
In addition to requiring a change in dialing habits, this transition will impact any equipment or software programmed to make seven-digit calls. Phone contacts lists, fax machines, alarm systems with a telephone connection, call forwarding settings, speed dialing, and voicemail services will need to be updated. Residents should also consider adding their area code into email signatures, stationary, contact information on file with medical offices, and anything else that lists their phone number.
The nationwide three-digit 9-8-8 crisis hotline for suicide and mental health will not be in effect until July 16, 2022. Until then, anyone needing help can dial 1-800-273-8255 (1-800-273-TALK) to reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. Additional information on 10-digit dialing is available via local service providers and on the FCC’s website at www.fcc.gov/suicide-prevention-hotline.
Southeastern Arizona Communications (SEACOM)
1728 Paseo San Luis, Sierra Vista, AZ 85635 · 520-803-3555 · Fax 520-458-5199