Ten digit dialing starts for 478 and 912 area codes
MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Soon you will have to dial all ten digits of a phone number if you live in the 478 area code.
The reason behind the change is because the FCC issued an order to make 988 the new phone number for the National Suicide Hotline.
The ‘permissive dialing period’ begins on Saturday, April 24th. That means people with the 478 area code can choose to dial the area code or still use seven digits.
That permissive dialing period ends October 24.
After October 24th, you must dial the 478 area code to make a local call. We spoke with Ashley Allen, Director of Macon-Bibb County services at River Edge Behavioral Health. She says the change will help save lives.
“I think it’s really important for our community to have an easy to access suicide hotline,” says Allen. “With going to the 988 number it’s going to be easier for people to remember. It’s going to be easier for people to access as opposed to that 10 digit number.”
This will also affect the 912 area code in Savannah.
988 is not currently active at this time. The FCC is requiring all telecommunications providers to make necessary network changes to allow access to 988 by July 16, 2022.