911 Outages Reported Wednesday Night in 4 States Before Being Restored Hours Later

Officials in Nebraska, Nevada, South Dakota and Texas recommended that people use alternative methods in order to reach emergency operators while systems were down

<p>Getty</p> A person dialing 911  (stock photo)


A person dialing 911 (stock photo)

Widespread 911 outages were reported across four states on Wednesday, April 17, according to officials.

Several parts of Nebraska, Nevada, South Dakota and Texas lost access to emergency services in the evening, prompting authorities to ask the public to use alternative methods of reaching operators until service was restored hours later.

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety (DPS) announced on social media on Wednesday at around 10:40 p.m. CT that there had been a “911 service interruption throughout the state” and that efforts were “underway to resolve the issue.”

Until then, the South Dakota DPS recommended that people text “9-1-1” instead. If that was not an option, they also recommended that citizens reach out to their “local police and county sheriff offices emergency services using their non-emergency line.”

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About two hours later, the South Dakota DPS shared that service was “restored” to its 911 system and that it was “fully operational and ready to respond promptly to any situation.”

Other major cities, like Las Vegas, also were hit with an outage. The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department shared on social media that around 7 p.m. PT there was a “911 outage” that impacted outreach to emergency services.

The police department recommended that people still “dial 911” on their cellphones so that emergency services could see the number and call people back. At the time, they noted they had no “estimate for service restoration.”

At around 10 p.m. PT, the police department shared that their 911 and non-emergency calls were once again “working,” and noted that all the people who had called the 911 emergency line had been responded to and received assistance.

Henderson, Nev., which is located just southeast of Las Vegas, also had a 911 outage, prompting the Henderson Police Department to ask people to text 911 and use Rapid SOS in the meantime.

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The police department in the City of Del Rio, Texas also shared on social media that there was a “service outage impacting 911 calls” at around 9 p.m. CT. However, the police noted that the outage was “with a major cellular carrier affecting the ability to reach 911.”

The department added, "This issue is with the carrier and not the City of Del Rio systems. Our emergency services remain operational.” Though, they did not say which provider was down.

During the outage, the police said that those who were unable to reach 911 on their cellphones should “use a landline or another carrier.”

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There was also a 911 outage in Douglas County, Nebraska, according to KMTV. Officials said, per the outlet, that instead of being patched through to emergency services, callers will instead “hear a fast busy signal after dialing 911.” Officials recommended calling the Douglas County dispatcher line.

Authorities in the different states did not say what may have caused the 911 outages.

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