Californian authorities report deluge of false alarm calls from Apple facility

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Neither Apple nor Elk Grove Police have commented on which devices are responsible for making the calls, but recent generation iPhones and Apple Watches are likely to blame.

Per day, Elk Grove police said they received 20 accidental emergency calls from the Apple facility and Hudson said this can be unsafe as it takes valuable time away from teams who could be responding to genuine emergency situations.: "The times when it's greatly impacting us is when we have other emergencies happening and we may have a dispatcher on another 911 call that may have to put that call on hold to triage the incoming call".

Dispatchers say the calls started back in October of 2017, and typically there's no one on the other line.

Apple has confirmed that the accidental 911 calls are indeed coming from its fix and refurbishment center in Elk Grove and that the company is working on a solution.

Flooding emergency services with false alerts can take away focus from real problems that are on going. The calls show no service provider for the phone, but the dispatch center has traced them to a cell tower near the Apple campus and determined that they are coming from the phone fix facility, he said.

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The accidental calls are beginning to frustrate police departments and dispatchers.

Apple said in a statement: "We're aware of 911 calls originating from our Elk Grove fix and refurbishment facility".

"The times when it's greatly impacting us is when we have other emergencies happening and we may have a dispatcher on another 911 call that may have to put that call on hold to triage the incoming call".

The Sheriff's department of Sacramento County says it has also received these calls, noting staff can sometimes hear fix technicians in the background. For the iPhone 7 and earlier, the feature is activated by pressing an iPhone's lock/power button five times quickly.

Have you ever accidentally called 911 using SOS on your iPhone or Apple Watch? Jason Jimenez of the Elk Grove Police Department has said that "public safety is not in danger", at this time. For the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, users will simply have to press and hold the side button and one of the volume buttons until the Emergency SOS slider appears.

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