Gratiot area loses 911 service

The Newark Advocate is reporting that almost 1,300 Alltel customers in and around Gratiot were without 911 emergency phone service for about six hours on Monday.

Erin Ascione, a spokeswoman for Alltel, told the Advocate a road crew mistakenly cut a fiber line on Gratiot Road about 9:30 a.m. Monday. Customers with a 787 exchange were unable to call outside of their exchange until the line was repaired about 3:30 p.m.

From the story:

    "We thought we could re-route calls back to 911 and weren't able to do that," said Jeff Walker, director of the Licking
    align="right">County Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency. "It was definitely a frustrating period of time."

    The last time a similar situation occurred was last year in the St. Louisville area, Walker said.

    "In discussions with Alltel, we thought it was totally solved and we found out (Monday) it wasn't," Walker said.

Officials told the newspaper customers would have received a busy signal if they had placed a 911 call.

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