- Associated Press - Saturday, September 12, 2020

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - One South Carolina county is replacing ringing when someone calls 911 with a recorded announcement.

The recording in Charleston County will let the caller know their emergency call has been received and tell them not to hang up because an operator will be on shortly, officials said.

“We are concerned with citizens hanging up if their 911 call isn’t answered on the first or second ring. When a caller hangs up, then another line is tied up calling the citizen back,” Charleston County Consolidated Dispatch Director Jim Lake said.

Lake said the problem crops up a lot after a big wreck or at busy times of the day and leads dispatchers to use valuable time checking to make sure the caller who hung up isn’t having an emergency,

The recording was added to 911 calls on Thursday.

Charleston County 911 received more than 5,700 emergency calls and 6,700 non-emergency calls in August.

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