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New Bern adds text-to-911 technololgy

INTRO – The New Bern Police Department has announced an addition to their 9-1-1 service. George Olsen has more.

A press release from the City of New Bern says anyone within city limits can now access 9-1-1 services via text message through four major US cell phone carriers. Customers with Verizon, Sprint, T-Mobile and AT&T can now text 9-1-1 when unable to make a voice call. Authorities say voice calls for 9-1-1 emergencies are preferred over text, but note it improves 9-1-1 accessibility for the disabled and those with hearing difficulties. Police Chief Toussaint Summers Jr. notes New Bern now joins the less-than-10-percent of the nation’s emergency call centers with Text to 9-1-1 technology. Carteret County added the service in September. I’m George Olsen.

George Olsen is a 1977 Havelock High School graduate. He received his B.A. in Broadcast Journalism from the University of South Carolina in 1982 where he got his first taste of non-commercial radio working for their student station WUSC. After graduation he worked about five years in commercial radio before coming to work at Public Radio East where he has remained since outside of a nearly 3-year stint as jazz and operations coordinator at WUAL in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in the early 1990s. On his return to eastern North Carolina he hosted classical music for Public Radio East before moving into the Morning Edition host position and now can be heard on All Things Considered. He also hosts and produces The Sound, five hours of Americana, Roots Rock and Contemporary Folk weekday evenings on PRE Public Radio East News & Ideas, and is a news and feature producer for Public Radio East.