Mandatory 10-digit local dialing starts in 10 days for 843 area code in South Carolina
TDS Telecommunications Corp. alerts South Carolina residents and businesses within the 843 area code that, as of Sept. 19, all local calls will require 10-digit dialing (area code plus 7-digit telephone number).
TDS Telecommunications Corp. (TDS®) is reminding South Carolina residents and businesses in the 843 area code that ten-digit dialing becomes mandatory in 10 days. Effective Sept. 19, 2015, all local calls placed in the Coastal Counties region will require callers to include the area code and telephone number. This impacts communities such as Awendaw, Bonneau, McClellanville, Pineville, and St Stephen.
Then, beginning Oct. 19, 2015, the new 854 area code will be “overlaid” or superimposed over the same geographical area as the 843 area code. Adding the new area code ensures a continuing supply of telephone numbers for businesses and residents in the current 843 area code region. The South Carolina Public Service Commission ordered the Area Code Overlay for the area served by 843.
According to Federal Communications Commission rules, when two area codes serve the same region, callers are required to change the way they dial local calls. While residents do not have to change their existing area code or phone number, they are required to ten-digit dial all local calls (area code and seven-digit telephone number).
What residents and businesses need to know about the area code overlay:
Existing phone numbers in the 843 area code will not change.
You will need to dial area code + telephone number for all local calls.
The price for calls, local and long-distance calling areas, and other rates and services provided by TDS will not change due to the new Area Code Overlay. What’s a local call now remains a local call, regardless of the number of digits dialed.
The dialing procedure for long distance and operator assisted calls will not change.
911 remains a three-digit dial. If 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711 and 811 are available currently, they will remain a three-digit dial.
Customers should identify their telephone number as a ten-digit number (area code + 7-digit telephone number), and include the area code when giving their number to friends, family, business associates, and customers.
In addition, residents should ensure all of their automatic dialing equipment, applications, software, and other types of equipment are re-programmed to follow the new 10-digit dialing procedure. This includes PBX systems, electronic telephone sets, auto-dial systems, multi-line key systems, life safety systems, fax machines, Internet dial-up numbers, alarm and security systems, gates, speed dialers, call forwarding settings, and voicemail services.
Residents and businesses should also check with security or alarm companies to make sure their systems are programmed to handle the new dialing pattern.
For more information, visit www.regulatorystaff.sc.gov or contact TDS at 888-CALL-TDS (888-225-5837).
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