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California Highway Patrol emergency dispatchers are at the ready to help people in crisis. There's just one problem. More than half the 911 calls they receive come from people who didn't mean to call them at all. But now there's a program designed to weed out the bogus calls.
Those calls typically come from cell phones. Keys are pushed accidentally and the call goes through without the owner of the phone realizing they've called 911. Emergency dispatchers then have to take the time to call back and see if there's a real emergency. Meanwhile, real life and death calls could be waiting.
The Bay Area is experimenting with a pilot program. It's called cellular priority answering. The 911 caller will hear a recording telling them to press an additional number if it really is an emergency call. It will be tried for six months on Bay Area 911 calls. If successful, it will then be expanded to other CHP dispatch centers including those in Sacramento and Stockton.
(This story was provided by News10 KXTV Sacramento.)