Get ready to re-program your phone as 10-digit dialing is soon coming to parts of the Hudson Valley and Long Island.
The change, which begins Saturday, April 24, was announced by The Federal Communications Commission in this month's phone bills.
The reason behind the change is the FCC has adopted 988 as a new three-digit number to be used nationwide to reach the National Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis Lifeline starting Friday, July 16.
But in order for the 988 to work, 10-digit dialing must first be implemented, the FCC said.
If callers forget and just dial seven numbers, the calls will still go through until Sunday, Oct. 24. After that date, all 10 digits, including the area code, and then the phone number will need to be dialed for the call to be completed.
A large section of the country has used the 10-digit dialing for several years and has adapted quite quickly, the FCC added.
Besides reprogramming your phone, don't forget about other equipment that dials automatically such as a fax machine, security alarm systems, voice mail services, and some computers.
And, don't forget to change your email contact or stationery, and pet ID tags to include the area code.
In the Hudson Valley and Long Island, the areas affected by the change include the following area codes:
Emergency calls to 911 or 711 will remain the same.
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