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911 Calls In Massachusetts Affected By CenturyLink Outage

BOSTON (CBS) – A nationwide outage involving an internet company affected 911 calls in Massachusetts on Friday.

The CenturyLink outage caused problems with wireless 911 calls in various parts of the country Friday morning. But by the afternoon, Massachusetts State Police said some landline calls were also affected. The issue, at least with respect to Massachusetts, was corrected by 8:15 p.m.

"You may hear a fast busy signal, hear a recording saying 'All circuits are busy' or something similar, or you may get connected to a different emergency call center than you were expecting," State Police said in a statement before the issue was resolved.

If you need to call for help, always try 911 first.

If that doesn't work, dial the local police or fire department directly or one of these State Police emergency call centers:

  • Framingham PSAP 508-350-7005
  • New Braintree Control PSAP 508-867-1170
  • Shelburne Control PSAP 413-625-8200
  • Northampton Control PSAP 413-586-1508

You can also call any State Police barracks in your area. You can find all of those numbers here.

"If you cannot locate your city or town's 10-digit emergency number, please contact the State 9-1-1 Department at 508-872-2508 and tell the dispatcher the exact location of the emergency, including city or town, and they can transfer you to the correct department," State Police said.

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) sent out two mobile alerts Friday saying "Sporadic 911 outages. In emergency use local 10-digit number for police/fire" to spread the word about the outages.

State Police said "text-to-911" service is also still available in Massachusetts. However, you must send the dispatcher your exact location, including the city or town of your emergency.

CenturyLink said work is still being done to fix the issue.

"Restoring impacted services for our customers is very important to us. We are seeing good progress, but our service restoration work is not complete. Our teams are continuing their efforts to resolve these issues and we will continue to provide updates throughout the day," the company tweeted.

CenturyLink, which is based in Louisiana, is one of the main providers of internet and phone connections to 911 call centers.

In Boston, a resident was forced to pull an old call box alarm Friday to report a building fire because of the 911 issues.

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