People could not call 999

Police logo SUS-140619-085028001
Police logo SUS-140619-085028001
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Many residents in rural Rother were unable to use the 999 emergency service during the afternoon of Monday April 20.

BT notified emergency services of problems which led to ‘partial and full’ disruption of the 999 emergency service. Mobile telephone numbers were not affected.

The telecommunications firm worked to restore the system and it was operational by 8.30pm the same day.

The areas affected by the problem were Peasmarsh, Sedlescombe and Wittersham.

Areas outside rural Rother that were affected included Bexhill, Hastings and Baldslow

People were asked by police not to make any non-urgent calls on Monday so that all the available phone lines could be used for emergencies.

A Sussex Police spokesperson said, on Monday: “If you have an emergency, you should first try both landline and mobile telephones to call ‘999’.

“If this does not work, flag down any emergency service vehicle that is not using blue lights or go to the nearest police station, hospital, fire or ambulance station to report the emergency.

“Extra police patrols are out in the affected areas and fire and ambulance resources are being sent to other visible locations.”

The situation also had a potential affect on the assistance alarms of elderly and vulnerable people.