Dispatch centers in Grayson & Fannin counties experience 911 out - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Dispatch centers in Grayson & Fannin counties experience 911 outage

SHERMAN -- 9-1-1 is often your lifeline during an emergency but Friday, callers in Grayson and Fannin counties had trouble getting through.

The amount of time the outage lasted is unknown, but by 12:30 Friday afternoon, the phone was ringing again at the 9-1-1 dispatch center in the Sherman Police Department.

For several hours until then, 9-1-1 callers to the dispatch center couldn't get through, or were re-routed to other locations.

As soon as the problem became known, many received a code-red text message from the Grayson County Office of Emergency Management.

It alerted users about a 9-1-1 outage and told them to call 903-813-4411 for emergency assistance.

"First responders increased their awareness in the communities in the event people weren't aware of the outage," OEM director Sarah Somers said.

By 1:30pm, limited service was restored.

Callers who dialed 9-1-1 could get through, but location information dispatchers normally automatically receive didn't come with the calls.

"They need to know that 9-1-1 isn't working the way they take for granted everyday and there may be additional information that the call-takers need to help get assistance in route quickly," Somers said.

OEM director Sarah Somers says the 9-1-1 system is run by Verizon which was experiencing a network outage.

We contacted Verizon. A representative sent us a statement:

"Recent bad weather caused one of our lines to go down in the early morning hours ... and it affected how 911 calls in Sherman, Grayson and Bonham were routed. Calls immediately went to a back up location."

"Our team of technicians responded as quickly as possible to fix the line, which was restored around 12:30 p.m."