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Cellphones failing to give locations in emergency situations

from The Dallas Morning News

911 calls from landlines are naturally attached to an address. But the FCC estimates that 70 percent of 911 calls nationwide now come from cellphones. FCC regulations call for cellphones to give location information in two phases. The first phase immediately gives call takers a phone number and the cell tower's location. As the call continues, a second phase of information comes in within 30 seconds and gives the caller's latitude and longitude in a range of 55 to 330 yards. When the agency created those regulations, cellphones were primarily used outdoors when dialing 911, such as calls on a highway. Currently, cell companies only have to prove that the data can come in effectively on outdoor calls. But more than half of 911 calls are now made from indoors. more


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