Police: Don't Call 911 to Report Cable Outage

Frantic TV watchers call police to complain when their cable stops working.

By LeAnne Gendreau and Liz Dahlem
|  Tuesday, Aug 20, 2013  |  Updated 11:14 AM EDT
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Fairfield Police are concerned that calls reporting no cable were not of an emergency nature.

Fairfield Police are concerned that calls reporting no cable were not of an emergency nature.

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Fairfield Residents Call 911 When Cable Goes Out

Fairfield police said they started receiving 911 calls when cable went out last night and misuse of 911 could lead to arrests.
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When the cable went out in Southern Connecticut last night, frantic residents called 911. Police in Fairfield were not happy about it.

The police department put the word out on Facebook that residents should call the cable company, not law enforcement's emergency line.

Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara said he could not provide the exact number of calls received, but there were "a few."

"Hi, I am just trying to figure out what’s going on. We have no TV," one caller told the 911 dispatcher.

"Ma’am, 911 is for life-threatening emergencies," the dispatcher reminded the woman.

The woman said she knew that and was just trying to find out what’s going on.

"I suggest you call Cablevision, or whoever your cable provider is," the dispatcher said.

In the Facebook post, police warned that misuse of 911 could result in an arrest. 

“This is neither an emergency or a police related concern. Please direct your inquiries to Cablevision,” they wrote. “911 should only be called for Life Threatening Emergencies ONLY.”

Among those who lost cable were customers from Stamford to Milford, according to the Connecticut Post. Cablevision released a statement Sunday night saying a power outage in Norwalk had caused the problem.

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