October 18, 2019

FCC Wireless Location Accuracy Waivers

cell tower

On May 24th, the FCC granted several requests for waivers by wireless licensee petitioners of Section 20.18(i) of the Commission’s rules. Those rules specify wireless E911 location accuracy standards and impose reporting requirements.

The rules require Commercial Mobile Radio Service (CMRS) providers to establish a location accuracy test bed to validate their indoor location technologies. Additionally, they must aggregate and quarterly report live 9-1-1 call data from six representative cities. Biannually, non-nationwide providers must report live 9-1-1 call data, either for one or more of the six representative cities or the largest county in the provider’s service area.

Reference: FCC Wireless E911 Location Accuracy Requirements, Fourth Report and Order, , PS Docket No. 07-114

The intent of the rules are to ensure that PSAP’s within a wireless provider’s service area. Those PSAPs must have requested Phase II location data from a provider. The rules ensure that the location technologies implemented by a CMRS are reliable. Those CMRS providers that requested waivers of the FCC’s rules classify themselves as small, rural providers of wireless telecommunications services. Furthermore, the PSAPs in their service areas either are not capable of receiving and using Phase II location data or have not requested Phase II.

The FCC agreed with the individual petitioners that the purpose of the rules could not be served by requiring the CMRS providers to provide Phase II location data to a PSAP that was not yet capable of receiving the data.

While the FCC agreed with the individual petitioners, a blanket request for waiver from NTCA – The Rural Broadband Association. The NTCA petitioned on the premise that the issues apply more broadly to all rural wireless providers who have not yet received requests for Phase II from PSAPs. The FCC denied the NTCA’s request for waiver on the basis that the rules allow individual petitioners to seek relief are sufficient in their current form without granting a blanket waiver.

The full order is available from the FCC.

More EmComm Brief News

Related articles

GCI Logo

GCI Outage In Anchorage Affects Local Businesses

Phone Service Outage Impacting 9-1-1 Calls On Wednesday, August 14th, the Anchorage Police Department alerted the community that a GCI outage for their customers caused problems with making outbound phone calls, thus impacting their ability to dial 9-1-1 in an emergency. Related Story: GCI Landline Issues Reported Throughout Anchorage Founded in 1979, General Communications Inc, […]

San Francisco teams up with Uber for 9-1-1

An ambulance racing toward a single-room occupancy hotel in San Francisco’s Tenderloin neighborhood wouldn’t have known where to go in October 2018 had it not been for a ping from a smartphone. The caller had just fallen down a stairwell inside the SRO hotel and the only location the person could provide was a nearby […]

Subscribe and Stay Tuned!

We promise not to spam you.  You will receive periodic emails on critical 9-1-1 industry news/announcements to help you keep up with the latest information.