A new law changing how you dial 9-1-1 from inside of a hotel or office building goes into effect September 1, 2016.
Senate Bill 788, also known as "Kari's Law," was signed into law by Governor Greg Abbott in 2015. This year, the Commission of State Emergency Communications has implemented the law, which requires all businesses that operate with a multi-line telephone system to provide callers with direct access to 9-1-1 without dialing a digit (like "9") beforehand.
The law is named after Kari Hunt Dunn, a mother of three who was brutally murdered in 2013.
She was 31-years-old when her estranged husband forced her into a motel bathroom in Marshall, TX, and stabbed her to death.
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Her 9-year-old daughter was brave enough to pick up the phone and dial 9-1-1, but she did not know she had to dial "9" to get an outside line.
For years, Kari's father has been fighting for justice and to the change the laws surrounding emergency calls. After nearly 551,000 signatures on a petition pushing for new regulations, "Kari's Law" will finally be in effect.
Beginning Thursday, businesses must provide callers with direct access to 9-1-1, and owners must reprogram or replace their telephone systems.
Afterwards, owners should contact their "MLTS" operator to confirm their direct line to 9-1-1, and then schedule a test call with the local 9-1-1 agency.
If you are business owner and cannot reprogram the telephone system in time, or it is too costly to do so, you can fill out a waiver application online.
Kari's Law has also made an impact on hotel chains. Hilton hotels and Marriott hotels are striving to change their telephone systems not only in Texas, but nationwide.
Read more online: http://www.texas911.org/karislaw