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BT fix landline problems meaning 999 service is back to normal for Suffolk residents

PUBLISHED: 06:33 16 August 2017 | UPDATED: 06:33 16 August 2017

A police officer taking a 999 call. Photo: Tim Ockenden/PA.

A police officer taking a 999 call. Photo: Tim Ockenden/PA.

Thousands of people in Suffolk were told to dial 999 from their mobiles if they had an emergency last night after BT announced they were dealing with a large-scale problem with landlines.

The widespread issue, which lasted three hours, stopped people from being able to use their landlines in Aldeburgh, Bildeston, Charsfield, Eyke, Felixstowe, Foxhall and Hedingham (in north Essex).

Residents in Kesgrave, Mendlesham, Saxmundham, Stowmarket, Sudbury, Whitton and Woodbridge were also hit by the outage.

Police were urged people to dial 999 from their mobile phones in an emergency or to call 101 instead to make sure their call gets through.

The problem was announced by police at 7.22pm. The force said in an update that the issued had been resolved at 10.35pm.

A BT spokesman said the vast majority of services were back on by 8pm and the final lines were restored by 10.10pm.

He added: “We have had some equipment failure in the exchange which caused the loss of some landline services in the area.”

Engineers worked quickly to ensure they did all they could to restore the full service as quickly as possible.

The spokesman also said there was no issue with the 999 service itself.

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