(WETM) – Anyone making a local call using the 607 area code will now be required to include the area code when dialing.
According to the Federal Communications Commission and the North American Numbering Plan Administrator, this is due to the creation of the 988 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
“Just like for an emergency calling 911, in a suicide prevention or mental health crisis, you can dial 988 and that number will take you to the National Suicide Prevention and mental health crisis lifeline,” Steuben County Director of Public Safety Timothy Marshall said.
Here’s what 10-digit dialing it means for those making phone calls to 607 phone numbers:
- Beginning April 24, 2021, to begin to become accustomed to 10-digit dialing, consumers should begin dialing 10 digits (3-digit area code + 7-digit telephone number) for all local calls. If they forget and dial just 7 digits, their call will still be completed.
- Beginning October 24, 2021, consumers must dial 10-digits (area code + telephone number) for all local calls. On and after this date, local calls dialed with only 7 digits may not be completed, and a recording will inform you that your call cannot be completed as dialed. Consumers must hang up and dial again using the area code and the 7-digit number.
- Beginning July 16, 2022, dialing “988” will route calls to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
“It’ll be a pain for a while, but I think people get used to it,” Marshall said. “It’s not really that big of a change.”
The 607 area code is one of 79 area codes in the country that will be affected. Your telephone number, including the current area code, will not change, according to TMobile.
Other New York area codes affected include 516, 716, 845, and 914.
“Western New York and other areas of New York have been dialing 10 digits for quite some time now,” Marshall told 18 News. “It just happens to be that we’re catching up with them at this point.”
You can still dial just three digits to reach 711 (relay services) and 911 (emergency services), and any 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, or 811 services available in your community can still be reached by dialing their three-digit codes.
The North American Numbering Plan Administrator has a complete listing of affected area codes and resource materials for local government and community organizations.
Marshall is urging residents impacted by the change to plan ahead. He said anyone with a security system within their business or home should inspect it to make sure that it dials a 10idigit number, not seven.
If you have any questions regarding 10-digit calling, contact 888-211-4727 for mobile service or 877-877-8748 for wireline/landline service.
Anyone in the United States experiencing a suicidal crisis or emotional distress should call 1-800-273-8255.