FCC Issues $100K Forfeiture Order for Violation of 911 Rules

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The FCC’s Enforcement Bureau (Bureau) has issued a Forfeiture Order which imposes a penalty of $100,000 against Hinton Telephone Company of Hinton, Oklahoma, Inc. (Hinton) for violating the FCC’s 911 rules. In August 2014, the Bureau issued a Notice of Apparent Liability for Forfeiture (NAL) against Hinton, alleging that for a period of several months in 2013, rather than properly route 911 calls to a Public Safety Answering Point, Hinton sent 911 calls to an automated operator message which instructed callers to “hang up and dial 911” if their call is an emergency. Hinton responded to the Bureau’s NAL by requesting that the proposed forfeiture be cancelled and repeating the same arguments it made in response to an earlier Letter of Inquiry. The Bureau rejected Hilton’s arguments. Accordingly, the Bureau has declined to cancel or reduce the $100,000 forfeiture proposed in the NAL.

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