Press Release

Public Knowledge Submits 911 Petition to FCC to Ensure Help Arrives

November 18, 2014 ,

Today, Public Knowledge submitted a petition asking the Federal Communications Commission to implement its proposed rules to ensure 911 dispatchers can locate callers, including those using cell phones indoors. The petition has more than 1,000 signatures and follows disturbing reports of wireless carriers failing to pinpoint 911 caller locations. Public Knowledge contends that the FCC must ensure that help will arrive during emergencies no matter how people call 911 — or where they call from.

The following can be attributed to Clarissa Ramon, Government Affairs and Outreach Associate of Public Knowledge:

“Despite the increasing prevalence of mobile-only households, carriers have yet to improve or address the widespread reports of failed location accuracy in many states. More than an estimated 240 million calls are placed to 911 yearly, and almost 70 percent of those originate from mobile devices. If the FCC adopts stronger rules, the Commission could help save at least 10,000 lives per year.

“We circulated this petition to create awareness of the current state of 911 rules and to seek public support of the FCC’s proposed rules. Not only did we see a strong outcry that help must come, but many of those who signed the petition have personally felt the sting of unreliable 911 service for wireless callers. We encourage the FCC to adopt its proposed rules to guarantee that a 911 first responder is always able to determine a caller’s location during an emergency, no matter how that person calls.”

You may view our blog post for more information.