WEST MICHIGAN — Residents in the 616 area code who are customers of TDS Telecom will soon be required to enter all 10 digits (including the area code) for local calls.
TDS Telecom says the requirement takes effect Sunday, Oct. 24.
Customers are advised to check all automatic dialing programs to ensure that all phone numbers are 10 digits long.
TDS adds residents and businesses should consult their alarm and security companies to ensure their systems are equipped to operate under the 10-digit requirement.
The TDS service area in 616 is very limited; the company's web site lists Hickory Corners as one service area.
Other products that may require adjustments include life-safety systems, VoIP systems, auto-dial systems, electronic telephones, security systems, voicemail services, speed dialers, gates, multi-line key systems and voicemail, according to TDS.
We’re told the 10-digit requirement will help prevent accidental calls to the 9-8-8 emergency line.
TDS notes that dialing 9-8-8 will direct callers to the National Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis Lifeline starting July 16, 2022 (until then, the number is still 1-800-273-TALK).
Those with questions regarding the change are asked to call 1-888-CALL-TDS or click here.