Telecom companies on island have started notifying their customers about a new rule in dialing local calls on Guam.
GTA TeleGuam has sent notifications warning its customers to get ready to change the way they dial local calls starting this October.
The Federal Communications Commission recently designated “988” as the 3-digit number for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline.
The designation was made to help combat rising suicide rates by making it easier for Americans in crisis to obtain assistance from trained counselors.
The problem for Guam is that the 3-digit 988 number prefix is already in use on island and any calls starting with 988 may automatically bring the caller to the suicide hotline instead of the intended call receiver.
To prevent this, all local calls will need to dial 671 first before dialing the local telephone number. This will prevent the automatic triggering and placement of calls to the national suicide hotline.
This mandatory 10-digit local dialing will start on Oct. 24, 2021.