760 area code change begins Saturday
Residents in the North County will have to start dialing a 1 and the area code when placing calls, starting Saturday, according to state utility officials.
The 11-digit dialing procedure will be mandatory for all residential and business customers within the 760 area code, according to the California Public Utilities Commission.
The change follows a decision by the CPUC last year to create a so- called “overlay” that added a 442 area code to areas now served by the 760 area code in order to provide additional telephone numbers to meet demand.
The CPUC wanted to split the 760 area code, but businesses and residents in some areas preferred having both the 760 and 442 area codes instead of being forced to change their old phone numbers.
The 760/442 area codes cover nearly one-third of California, according to the CPUC, from the southern Sierra Nevada mountains of Inyo and Mono counties through Death Valley National Park and the Mojave Desert to the Nevada and Arizona state lines, parts of Riverside, San Bernardino and Imperial counties and northern San Diego County.
Beginning Nov. 21, the 442 area code will be assigned to those who request a new telephone number or additional line in those areas, according to the CPUC.
However, starting Saturday, if residents do not dial a 1 plus the area code, their call will not be completed and a recording will instruct them to hang up and dial again, according to the CPUC.
A new area code was needed in the North County because population growth and the proliferation of wireless phones has nearly exhausted numbers in the 760 area code.
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