Portal Network Co. 911 Policy
In order to use any of the Portal Network Co. Voice services, you must acknowledge and accept the following 911 protocols and practises, that have been outlined for your safety, and the safety and well-being of those who make use of or interact with your voice services.
The following are some User Tips which should help you along the way in your understanding of the Portal Network Co. VoIP 911 service.
- It is important to note that VoIP 911 service you have subscribed to has certain limitations relative to Enhanced 911 service that is available on most traditional telephone services
- Be prepared to confirm your location and call-back number with the operator who answers the 911 call since the operator may not have this information easily available.
- Be aware that the VoIP 911 service may not be available during a power outage, environmental circumstances and will be unavailable during a broadband Internet outage.
- Make sure that your location information is kept current with your VoIP service provider since the operator may assume that you are at the last registered address if you are not able to speak during a 911 call.
- Make sure not to hang up until told to do so, and to call back as soon as possible if you get disconnected.
- Lastly you need to ensure that you understand any 911 limitations of your VoIP service and that you make all other potential users of the service aware of these limitations.
- If you still have further questions visit our 911 FAQ and Support page, or contact our support team to assist you.
TRAVELING WITH 911
- Unlike traditional phone lines, you can use your VoIP Portal Network Co. phone almost anywhere. Portal Network Co. service is portable to any location with broadband Internet access. Since Portal Network Co. uses the address you provide to determine the nearest emergency response centre, when you move or travel with your phone adapter within Canada, you must update your new location. Regardless of the internet connection you may have while traveling, the emergency response centre may not receive your phone number or correct physical location information when you place a 9-1-1 call, so it is important you are ready to give them your current location.
- Portal Network Co. will provide you with a web portal to temporarily update you information should you choose to travel with your Portal Network Co. phone. For temporary changes, the effects will only last for a maximum of 7 days. For permanent address changes you will need to contact Portal Network Co. directly, either by telephone or e-mail to update your permanent address information.
- It is also important to note that for customers traveling outside of Canada dialing 911 may not work and/or your address information may not be sent to the emergency response personnel, thus it is recommended you keep an additional method of contacting emergency services, or be prepared to tell the emergency services operator what your current location is.
- Please note that it can up 48 hours before your new settings take effect. Remember, when you make changes to your location, you will need to update your 911 information again.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
The following are some frequently asked questions to help you better understand the available VoIP 911 on the Portal Network Co. home phone service and your responsibilities in having it.
Do I get access to 911 services?
Yes as a Portal Network Co. home phone user, you get access to VoIP 911 services, only if you have given consent to Portal Network Co. to forward your private user data to the emergency dispatch center, provided that data is accurate and correct, which will be certified by our Portal Network Co. home phone support staff, once certified you will be able to successfully dial 911 and receive the emergency response services.
What is the difference between VoIP 911 and traditional 911?
The VoIP 911 service that Portal Network Co. home phone provides has certain limitations relative to traditional 911 services that are available on most traditional telephone services, in that your client information is being sent over the internet rather then over a traditional phone line, meaning a different method is required to send this client information accurately.
What should I say to the operator or whoever picks up?
Be prepared to confirm your location and telephone number with the operator who answers the 911 call since the operator may not have this information. It is also recommended to keep in mind who your VoIP provider is because if necessary, the central call centers can contact them in severe emergency situations. It is also encouraged to not hang up until told to do so, and to call back if you get disconnected, as immediately as possible.
Is there ever a possibility my 911 service won't work?
VoIP 911 service may not be available during a power outage and will be unavailable during a broadband internet outage.
Why is it important to keep my 911 information up-to-date?
Keeping updated information is a way of ensuring that your location information is kept current with your VoIP service provider. Since the operator may assume that you are at the last registered address if you are not able to speak during a 911 call, this information is used to accurately connect you to the appropriate emergency response center, and subsequently the appropriate emergency response.
How do I keep this information up-to-date?
As a Portal Network Co. home phone user the information is easily changed by calling into the Portal Network Co. home phone call center, and or changing and resubmitting the information online.
I'm still confused, what is e911?
E911 stands for Enhance 911. It is an enhanced version of the 911 emergency services, and is provided by the Portal Network Co. home phone service. When you use this service, your personal information like name and address are automatically given to your local dispatch center or Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) over the internet.
- VoIP 911 service has certain limitations and differences relative to the traditional 911 services available through past telephone services. Because the phone call is over the internet, the method in which your address is sent to the emergency dispatch works differently, and relies on the caller to be actively submitting accurate and current address information from the location their VoIP phone is located.
- In order to correctly use VoIP 911 dialling service in cases of emergency you must have authorized and given Portal Network Co. consent to forward your private user data to the appropriate emergency response dispatch. This also requires that you, the subscriber keep accurate and up-to-date user data at all times. As a result the 911 dialled call can be routed appropriately to dispatch, and will coincide with your current location. The 911 dialled calls will end up with a dispatcher who will be located at either the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) or will be routed to the local emergency service personnel center, which is selected based upon the address you listed at the time you subscribed and/or updated for the Portal Network Co. phone service.
- There are several circumstances we wish to inform you about in which VoIP 911 service would or would not be working. All VoIP calls depend on having an active internet connection, this includes VoIP 911 calls. Additionally your internet connection is dependent on the activity your internet service provides, which too can be effected by blackouts, environmental disruption and service-wide outages. These effects have the ability to reduce the VoIP 911 service to unavailable. Depending on your region and service you may also experience low to high bandwidth fluctuations which can reduce the quality of your connection to the point where VoIP 911 services will not work. The VoIP 911 dialling service will not function in the event of hardware failing or not being configured correctly. Additionally your Portal Network Co. phone VoIP 911 service will not work in the event of a power outage, broadband service outage, or suspension or disconnection of your service because of billing issues. If there is a power outage, you may be required to reset or reconfigure the ATA prior to being able to use the service, for mostly including 911 dialling purposes.
- For technical reasons associated with the possibility of network congestion with the Portal Network Co. home phone service, there is a possibility that your 911 call will produce a busy signal or will take longer to answer, as compared to traditional 911 calls.
- The Portal Network Co. home phone VoIP 911 dialling service will not function correctly if you move your equipment to a location other than the one that was provided to Portal Network Co. at the time you activated the service. In such event, in order to have 911 calling routed correctly, you must update your service address at www.Portal Network Co..ca, at which time the VoIP 911 dialling ability will be correctly re-enabled.
- The VoIP 911 service that is provided is a highly tested and efficient system and it has been implemented by service professionals over several years. The condition for having and benefitting from the VoIP 911 service is to keep accurate and up to date address information at all time. Giving your consent, your private information will then be provided to the emergency dispatch, where, should you ever the need to dial 9-1-1 your call is routed via the internet to a specialized emergency dispatch where they will connect you and your user data to the appropriate regional emergency dispatch.
- The most significant differences between VoIP 911 services and standard 911 services are that the actual calls are made using two distinctly different methods. VoIP 911 uses the internet as its data medium, while standard 911 uses traditional telephone lines. The two come together after your VoIP 911 call has been connected to the specialized emergency dispatch center where they will collect your user information and will forward both your call and private information to the appropriate emergency dispatch in your region. It is important to keep your information accurate and up to date.
- Because there are differences between the two 911 services, it is important to prepare yourself as these differences could potentially cause a problem to your connection. The best and utmost important thing to know is always have a plan. Just like in examples of where you would not be able to reach your standard phone to call in an emergency, it is wise to plan accordingly for the VoIP phone. One method is to have a backup phone, which is reachable in case of an emergency; a cell phone, an available neighbour, landline or another VoIP phone access point. It is also important to stay calm, because of the potential that your information is not current or correctly entered the emergency dispatch personnel will ask you for your location and situation. This may at the time feel overwhelming, but remember to stay calm, others may be counting on you, and the emergency dispatch operator is there to help. It is also important to remember that in a service or power outages; you will be unable to use your VoIP phone, so remember your plan, and what you will be asked; where I am, who I am and what's happening.
- The PSAP (Public Service Answering Point) or local emergency service dispatcher receiving your 911 call through the service may not be able to capture and/or retain automatic number of location information. Meaning that the dispatcher may not know the phone number or the actual physical location of the person who is making the 911 call. Therefore, if you dial 911 using the 911 dialling service, you must immediately inform the dispatcher of your exact location (or the location of the emergency, if different). You must also ensure not to disconnect the line, as the dispatcher may not have a phone number to use to call you back. You must not hang up until you are told to do so by the dispatcher. If you are inadvertently disconnected you must call back immediately. If you are unable to speak and describe your location, the emergency dispatcher may not be able to locate you. If you dial 911 and hang up the receiver, your call will be disconnected.
- In order to subscribe to the VoIP service it is your obligation to inform all users or potential users of the VoIP 911 service including the nature and limitations which have been outlined. The reason is that someone without the knowledge of how to operate or be prepared to handle a VoIP 911 call may put not only yourself but everyone at risk. Therefore you are obligated to make sure everyone who may come in contact with your VoIP subscription is educated about the VoIP 9-1-1 service.
- If you have not agreed to submit and allow for the disclosure of your address information for emergency purposes, then you are agreeing and acknowledging that any of your VoIP 911 use is at your sole discretion. You acknowledge and understand that Portal Network Co. will not be liable for any service outage and/or inability to dial 911 using your service or to access emergency service personnel due to the 911 dialling characteristics and limitations listed herein. You also agree to defend, indemnify and hold harmless Portal Network Co., its officers, directors, employees, affiliates, agents and any other service provider who furnishes services to you in connection with the service, from any and all claims, losses, damages, fines, penalties and costs (including solicitor's fees) by, or on behalf of, you or any third party or user of the service relating to the failure or outage of the service, including those related to 911 dialling.
- We take absolutely no responsibility should you or anyone with contact of the VoIP service or VoIP 911 calls become injured, damaged or perishes, to which you or anyone is reporting the damages to a third party. Portal Network Co. is absolved of any responsibility should the VoIP service including the VoIP 911 service is abused or mishandled under any circumstances. Additionally Portal Network Co. will take no responsibility should any user data be incorrect and/or maliciously entered resulting in damages or injury including death.
CCTS is an independent agency whose mandate is to resolve complaints of individual and small business customers about their telecommunications services. If you have a complaint about your telephone, wireless, or Internet service, you must first try to resolve it directly with your service provider. If you have done so and have been unable to reach a satisfactory resolution, CCTS may be able to help you, free of charge. To learn more about CCTS, you may visit its website at www.ccts-cprst.ca or call toll-free at 1-888-221-1687.