Illinois law seeks to make it easier to dial 911

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by KMOV.com Staff

KMOV.com

Posted on July 2, 2014 at 3:37 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 2 at 4:57 PM

(KMOV.com) – A new law that requires businesses to allow someone to dial 911 directly without having to dial other numbers took effect Tuesday.

The law applies to businesses such as a hotels where guests often have to dial “9” before calling anyone outside of the hotel. The new statute makes it illegal require someone to dial another number first in when dialing 911. Businesses that do not comply could be face $1,000 to $5,000 in fines.

The bill was approved unanimously after a young girl in Texas attempted to dial 911 from a hotel after her mother was stabbed. Authorities determined she could not get through because she did not dial “9,” her mother died from her wounds.

“When you dial those three digits you get to an emergency responder, you’re able to describe the situation. It will be of tremendous benefit to the emergency responders,” said Illinois State Representative Dan Beiser-D, Alton.

News 4 has learned many Metro East hotels have implemented the requirements since the law took effect.

Businesses that do not have the capability to comply will be required to follow the new law when they update their phone system.

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