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Nationwide internet outage disrupts 911 services across Washington state

A communications officer Michael Ryan works in the 911 dispatch center at the Rensselaer County Public Safety Building in Troy, N.Y.
Mike Groll
The Associated Press (file)
A communications officer Michael Ryan works in the 911 dispatch center at the Rensselaer County Public Safety Building in Troy, N.Y.

A massive CenturyLink internet outage knocked out 911 emergency call services across Washington state Thursday, a problem that persisted into Friday for some.

The outage began early in the day but by late Thursday night, the company tweeted that its engineers had identified a “network element” that was affecting services.

Monroe, Louisiana-based CenturyLink didn’t provide details of the problem and it didn’t indicate how many customers were affected. Customers from New York to California reported outages.

U.S. Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement via Twitter that the disruption in service was “completely unacceptable." The agency will investigate. 

Calls in South King County were working Friday morning, according to The Seattle Times. Meanwhile, Kitsap County had reportedly restored service. Service in Pierce County was slowly being restored. The 911 outage did not affect Snohomish or Whatcom counties, The Times reported.

If callers continue to experience issues, police and fire agencies encourage people to contact the following numbers:

Seattle: 206-583-2111 and 206-625-5011 or text 911

University of Washington Police: 206-685-8973

King County: 425-401-7788

Bellevue and Eastside: 425-577-5656

South King County: 253-852-2121

Unincorporated areas of King County: 206-296-3311 (This number also works for the following agencies, according to the King County Sheriff’s Office: Town of Beaux Arts Village, City of Burien, City of Carnation, City of Kenmore, King County International Airport, City of Maple Valley, King County Metro Transit, Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, City of Newcastle, City of Sammamish, City of SeaTac, City of Shoreline, Town of Skykomish, Sound Transit and City of Woodinville.)

Kitsap County: 360-308-5400

Kittitas County: 509-925-8534

Pierce County: 253-538-3240, option 4; and 253-798-4722

Thurston County: 360-704-2740

Snohomish County: 360-654-1204 and 425-407-3999

Skagit County: 360-654-1204 and 360-428-3211

Island County: 360-654-1204 and 360-679-9567

Whatcom County: 360-654-1204, 360-676-6911

Tacoma, Fife and Fircrest: 253-627-0151

Bothell: 425-486-1254

Snoqualmie: 425-888-3333 and 425-837-3200

Centralia: 360-740-1105

Redmond: 425-566-2500

Issaquah Police: 425-837-3200

Enumclaw: 360-825-3505

Chelan and Douglas counties: 509-663-9911

Clallam County Dispatch: 360-417-2259 

Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound: 206-217-6001

Lewis County Dispatch: 360-740-1105

Mason County Dispatch: 360-426-4441

Jefferson County Dispatch: 360-385-3831

The Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report. This story is developing. It will be updated as new information becomes available.