Tag Archives: 911 errors

Will your land line decide to call 911?

police cars delaware ohio 43015Yesterday morning I had a wake-up call that scared the bejeezus out of me. Murph’s shrill warning bark actually woke me up, then I heard someone knocking loudly on my door. I peeked out the blinds to see two police cars with lights flashing, sitting in front of my home and could see a portion of a police uniform at my door.

Since police are seldom in my neighborhood, especially at that hour, I didn’t know what to expect. Would guns be drawn???? 

The officer asked if I had called 911. I hadn’t. He then asked if my phone number was xxx-xxx-xxxx. It was an old land line number that I had canceled 3-4 years ago when I went with my cell phone exclusively. He told me to call the phone company to report it because sometimes these unused lines transmit noise that calls 911. When the 911 operator doesn’t receive a response, they notify the police.

A Facebook friend, who is a retired telecommunications engineer, gave this info.  “Water shorts or static on a land line can look like the old-fashioned dial pulses used on the old dial phones and the pulses can sometimes look like the digits 911 ( 9 pulses, 1 pulse, 1 pulse)….. not that uncommon.

Trying to call Verizon was no small feat because none of their automated options dealt with this problem. Finally, today I was able to speak with a “real” person who had heard of this happening. She took all my info and will report it. I’m not sure what will be PJ'sdone, but I’ll keep you posted. As more people cancel their land line phones, this problem may become better known.

Let this be a warning to all of you who have also canceled land lines … WEAR PJ’S! You never know when the police will knock on your door. BTW, I told the officer that he might want to stick around since my adrenalin was so high that I might just have a heart attack and really need their help. 🙂