Are 10-digit local calls in the capital’s future?
The California Public Utilities Commission is holding a meeting to discuss adding a new area code to the Sacramento region, which currently uses the area code 916. The commission expects to run out of phone numbers in the first quarter of 2018 due to increased demand.
Each area code has approximately 7.9 million available phone numbers, according to Joseph R. Cocke, an official with the North American Numbering Plan Administration, which allocates them. Cocke said Friday that the 916 area code has used up 93 percent of its available prefixes (the 3 digits after the area code in a phone number) and has only 53 prefixes left, which translates to 530,000 usable phone numbers available.
Adding a new area code would not affect existing lines, but people requesting phone numbers after March 2018 could get new area codes. The plan would, however, eliminate 7-digit local calling since there would be multiple area codes in the region.
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The 916 area code was created in 1947 as one of California’s three original area codes. The area code covers most of Sacramento and Placer Counties as well as parts of Yolo, Sutter, Solano and El Dorado Counties.
The meeting will take place at 1 pm at Sacramento City Hall.
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