AT&T to Trial Emergency 911 System in Tennessee
AT&T and Tennessee today announced plans to trial a 911 emergency response system that can receive incoming text messages. Tennessee recently approved the use of its Emergency Service IP Network to support the Text to 9-1-1 trial throughout the state. The trial will allow AT&T subscribers in Tennessee to send text messages to 911 rather than place phone calls should the need arise. The messages will be handled at Tenessee's public service answering points (PSAPs), where they will be directed to 911 operators who can then take specific action depending on the contents of the message. The trial will be used to evaluate the performance of Tennessee's infrastructure and how consumers respond to the option of sending text messages rather than making 911 emergency calls. The Federal Communications Commission wants next-generation 911 emergency response systems to accept both text and picture messages eventually.