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911 services down in N.W.T., as communication services disrupted across North

·2 min read
Northwest Territories emergency services sent out an alert Wednesday evening to inform residents that 911 services are down. Instead people should call 867-765-8337. (CBC - image credit)
Northwest Territories emergency services sent out an alert Wednesday evening to inform residents that 911 services are down. Instead people should call 867-765-8337. (CBC - image credit)

The Northwest Territories emergency services sent out an alert Wednesday evening to warn people that 911 services are down for the moment.

Instead, in the event of an emergency, people should call 867-765-8337. If the line is busy, call back immediately, the alert says.

Communication services were disrupted throughout the North Wednesday evening.

Across all three territories and in northern British Columbia, long distance landline calls are down, said Northwestel spokesperson Andrew Anderson. It's suspected the service interruptions are caused by damage to a fibre line north of Fort Nelson, B.C.

Anderson says people should still be able to make local calls.

In Nunavut, RCMP said those in a community outside of Iqaluit should go to the local detachment in case of an
emergency.

In Iqaluit, calls made from a land line to the emergency line — 979‐1111 — are working, however calls made from a cell phone to the emergency line do not work. People can also go to the detachment.

In Yukon and in northern British Columbia, there's a disruption in internet, long-distance calling and television services.

Anderson said there is limited cellular traffic available over an alternate route, but "customers may experience congestion on their cell phone."

"Technicians are working to restore service as soon as possible, but impacted communities should expect repairs to take up to several hours," he said.

Anderson added local phone service should still be working and people should be able to phone into emergencies services locally.

Northwest Territories RCMP also said in a news release Wednesday evening that there are disruptions to cell phone, long-distance calling, and landline services, "with services down or operating intermittently."

It has affected most N.W.T. communities and the Yellowknife area, police said.

"Emergency phone service may experience some technical difficulties, and call service in some communities may be intermittent," the release says. "This would include the local RCMP #1111 and may affect 911 service calls."

Both N.W.T. RCMP and Nunavut RCMP said updates will be provided "as required."

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