Fire Alarms in Jeopardy After Phone Company Abruptly Closes

First responders in Florida are afraid residents won’t be able to call for help in the event of a fire because local land lines have been shut down.

COLLIER COUNTY, Fla. — The North Collier Fire Control and Rescue District has warned residents here that their fire alarm systems may not work effectively due to a local phone company shutting down landlines.

Most fire alarms depend on land line phone service to work. However, when landlines are shut down, the line of communication to first responders is cut, unless someone contacts the fire department from a mobile phone, reports.

The issue became a matter of concern for the fire department when landlines for hundreds of residents in the area went silent because third-party provider TQC Communications abruptly closed up shop.

When customers dial into the communications firm, they are redirected to CenturyLink, which said it was selling network connectivity to TQC.

It is unclear why TQC, which was in business for 21 years, suddenly shut down.

Officials noted that it will take some time to reconnect fire alarms, as the fire department now needs to obtain a new county permit and conduct a fire inspection.

As of March 2, some communities were still offline.

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