Upgrades to Texas 911 call system - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Upgrades to Texas 911 call system

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Big plans are underway to better serve Texans during emergency situations.

The 911 system in Texas will soon be receiving improvements.

The Commission on State Emergency Communications received more funding this legislative session, by nearly $40 million.

Most of that extra money will go toward upgrading equipment, which would help dispatchers pinpoint the position of someone calling from a cell phone more accurately.

The agency also plans to begin converting the current statewide analog system into a digital one.

That would add text messaging as an option to get a hold of a 911 dispatcher.

By next year, the four largest wireless companies are expected to provide text to 911 service throughout the country.

AT&T, Sprint, T-mobile and Verizon have all voluntarily committed to make text to 911 available by My 15, 2014.

That will allow callers to send text messages to 911 wherever a local call center is prepared to receive texts.

In addition, the FCC has sought comment on proposed rules to require all wireless carriers and "interconnected" text message providers to make it available.