Many New Zealand households have moved from the old copper lines to new home phone technologies like fibre and fixed wireless.

These technologies need a power supply in the home to work, meaning they will not work in a power cut without an independent power source.

To assist people who will be unable to call 111 in a power cut the Commerce Commission has developed a 111 Contact Code.

Under the Code, telecommunications service providers offering home phone services must tell new customers, and remind existing customers at least once a year, that their home phone may not work in a power cut. Providers must also tell their customers how they can protect themselves and where to go for further support.

Home phone customers who don’t have an alternative way to contact 111 in a power cut can apply to their provider if they are at risk of needing to call emergency services for health, security or disability reasons. If they qualify, their provider will work with them to determine the right product for their needs, at no cost to the customer. This will apply from August 2021.

Please share this message if you know of people who may find themselves in a position where they cannot phone 111 in a power cut.

There is plenty of information on the Commerce Commission website(external link)

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