Starting on October 24, 2021, Colorado residents with a 970 area code will need to dial 10 digits when making a local. The change will come in preparation for the creation of a three-digit National Suicide Prevention and Mental Health Crisis Lifeline number.

According to Hello TDS, the new crisis hotline will launch in July of 2022 and will have a new and easy-to-remember number: 9-8-8.

Because the hotline is shifting to a three-digit emergency number, local numbers with 988 as the first three numbers could accidentally end up dialing the emergency hotline. Those seven-digit numbers with 988 as the first three will have to change to 10-digit dialing.

What does this change mean for Northern Colorado?

Honestly, not a whole lot. It's mostly a habit change to get used to dialing 10-digit numbers. Luckily, your area code will also stay the same, so no waiting in long lines at phone stores or letting your friends know of a number change.

Any three-digit emergency can still be dialed without the addition of dialing 1 + prior to the call.

Where else is this happening?

It's not just happening in Colorado, so strength in numbers! The new 10-digit dialing style will take hold in 82 area codes and 35 states, so we are not alone.

Service rates will also not affect calls. It's still considered a local call, so it literally just means adding a 1 + to the beginning of local calls in the affected areas.

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