Thursday, December 13, 2018 Elyria 32°

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Officials say 911 system should be back to full capacity sometime this week


ELYRIA — Lorain County officials hope to have the Lorain County Emergency 911 system back to full capacity sometime this week.

The system is receiving all incoming calls, but some functionality is still missing, county Administrator Jim Cordes said.

“We’re still on our workarounds,” he said. “We got our piece of equipment up, but we can’t get our calls routed through it. We’re still waiting for an engineer to come in from out of state.”

About 11 p.m. Thursday, the system went down, causing residents who called 911 during that time to be greeted by one or more ringing tones followed by silence. The county alerted dispatchers as well as residents to the outage through automated calls to landlines and an emergency text alert sent to cell phones.

The county is no longer encouraging residents to use the seven-digit phone numbers to call police and fire in the event of an emergency as they were right after the problem began.

“”We’re getting all the calls (to 911) now,” Cordes said. “The problem is we have to go to our other equipment to get an exact location. It’s nice when it goes through our ESC 1000, and (the location of the call) comes up on our screens. We’re having to do it old school right now.”

It still isn’t clear what caused the initial problem last week, Cordes said.

“No, we haven’t nailed it down specifically, so we’re still in the workaround,” he said.

Technicians have been working on solving what the cause of the outage was since Thursday night by working with technicians online and over the phone. Cordes said an out-of-state engineer is scheduled to be on site today.

The county also is working on moving the 911 emergency system to a new site. Once that move is completed, problems like the one that occurred last week won’t be as catastrophic, Cordes said.

“This is one of the problems we have right now,” he said. “It’s why we’re building a whole new 911 and when we finish the new 911, the backup will have redundant equipment to take care of that. We just don’t have that redundancy yet.”

Contact Scott Mahoney at 329-7146 or Follow him on Twitter @SMahoneyCT.

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