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York County 911 Center experiences power loss

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SPRINGETTSBURY TWP., Pa. -- Some people in York County experienced dropped calls after dialing 911 Tuesday morning. The outage lasted about an hour and a half, from 6:10 a.m. to 7:45 a.m.

A faulty battery caused a York County 911 Center power supply to fail during a regular test.

Carl Lindquist, director of communications for York County, said, "We were fortunate today we had a relatively low call volume, so the broad impact in terms of calls was low, but that does not discount the effect it might have on any individual caller."

Lindquist said in his six years working there he has never experienced a power loss in the center. A bypass switch installed in 2014 routed power around the damaged power supply, restoring the county to normal 911 operations.

He said, "In this case we're able to implement our backup procedures, we were able to work cohesively with our first response community. And although our capacity was diminished, we continued to function and help our community."

The York City Fire Department also had their own backup plan.

Fire Chief David Michaels said, "We advised people to call 911 if for some reason they weren't getting through, then to call our fire chief's office and we would have made sure that our trucks got to where they had to go."

The chief advises people to have their own backup plan as well in case of an emergency.

Michaels said, "Know where your local fire stations are if you would have to go there to make a notification."

He said to also have local station's numbers and if possible, pull a Gamewell fire alarm box. The box is an outdoor device that will notify a local fire station when pulled.