Delaware officials investigating 911 disruptions

DOVER — The Delaware Department of Safety and Homeland Security was working with network providers after 911 connection issues occurred for the second time in just over a week Monday night, spokeswoman Gina Chasanov said.

On Monday, cellphone callers from Kent and Sussex counties experienced difficulties in connecting when dialing Delaware State Police 911 call centers.

On Sept. 28, the issue was statewide with both cell phone and landline calls.

On Tuesday, Ms. Chasanov said the incidents were not directly connected.

The DHSS’ 911 state administrator is working with networks to determine the extent and cause of Monday’s disruption, Ms. Chasanov said.

According to Ms. Chasanov, “At this time, several major carriers have been identified as being impacted.

“As we explore this disruption further, we expect to gather more details on the specific carriers that were impacted.”

Issues on Monday began at around 7 p.m., Ms. Chasanov said, and Delaware State Police announced at around 11:15 p.m. that services were fully restored.

“While some calls were rerouted to call center administrative lines, other calls were unable to connect,” Ms. Chasanov said.

Ms. Chasanov said DSHS was “unaware of any adverse effects due to the outage.”

Landline calls were not affected during the time, she said.

When announcing the outage Monday night, Delaware State Police directed callers to text an emergency to 911 or call administrative numbers for Kent County or Sussex County 911, Dover and Rehoboth Beach police departments.

Dover police spokesman Sgt. Mark Hoffman and Rehoboth Beach police spokesman Lt. Jaime Riddle said neither of their departments saw an increased number of calls Monday.

On Tuesday afternoon, Kent County Division of Emergency Management Chief Colin Faulkner said he was still waiting on a report on Monday’s issues.

“I have serious concerns about this outage and the one which occurred last week around the same time,” he said.

On Sept. 28, DSP referenced potential busy signals or recorded messages received when calling 911.

“The most important information to be shared with citizens is that there are multiple ways to contact 911,” Ms. Chasanov said.

“Citizens are reminded to call via cell or landline or text if they experience difficulties. We will continue to publish this information through media outreach campaigns and social media.”