History

The E911 Service

  • AT&T implemented the use of 911 in the United States in 1968.
  • Enhanced 911 (E911) was first implemented in 1976.
  • The E911 system requires the use of an Automatic Location Identification (ALI) database to route 911 calls to the appropriate Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) and display the caller’s location.
  • The Washington State E911 Program, currently managed by the Washington State Emergency Management Division was established in 1991 to ensure E911 services were available to all within the State.
  • Washington State worked with various telephone companies and PSAP agencies throughout the state to create a state-wide E911 system and a common ALI database.

The Name Changes

  • AT&T was founded by Alexander Graham Bell and began operations in the United States in 1885.
  • Pacific Northwest Bell was founded as a subsidiary to AT&T in 1961.
  • The divestiture of AT&T in 1982 placed PNB into a regional holding company but the PNB name was retained.
  • Pacific Northwest Bell and some other Bell operating companies were merged into USWest in 1991.
  • USWest merged with and became absorbed by Qwest in 2000.
  • CenturyLink acquired Qwest in 2011.
  • CenturyLink (formerly Qwest, formerly USWest, formerly Pacific Northwest Bell (which was, then, a subsidiary of AT&T)) has now been purchased by Level3.
  • CenturyLink’s ALI database and PS/ALI administration contractor, West Corporation, purchased Intrado in 2006.
  • Intrado was a renaming of the company SCC in 2001.
  • SCC was the corporation originally contracted by USWest to perform the ALI database and PS/ALI administration.

The ALI Database

  • Pacific Northwest Bell (PNB) originally created an ALI database in the late 1970’s and managed it for its own service area.
  • Washington State contracted USWest to manage a state-wide E911 ALI database shortly after 1991.
  • CenturyLink has been responsible for the state-wide ALI database from 1991 until recently.
  • Sometime between 1991 and 1998 USWest contracted with SCC to manage the regional ALI database.  This contract relationship has been maintained through each company’s successor companies until today.
  • Washington State contracted with ComTechTel to manage the state-wide E911/NG911 infrastructure and ALI database in 2016.
  • Migration of the state-wide ALI database from CenturyLink to ComTechTel took place on April 2, 2016.

The PS/ALI Service

  • PNB managed all changes to the ALI database prior to their creation of the PS/ALI interface (AKA portal).
  • PNB created the PS/ALI interface shortly prior to 1987 to allow enterprises to independently update their ALI database.
  • The PS/ALI interface and the ALI database were initially managed by Pacific Northwest Bell.
  • The PS/ALI interface has been managed, since its inception, by the same companies managing the ALI database.
  • Migration of the state-wide ALI database from CenturyLink to ComTechTel took place on April 2, 2016; the PS/ALI interface was not retained in this migration.
  • CenturyLink will no longer provide PS/ALI service beginning May 8, 2019.
  • Current PS/ALI customers will need to submit ALI updates through a new third party ALI database update service provider after May 8, 2019.

LCSI and ALIPro Services

  • LCSI formed in 1984.
  • LCSI, Inc. began uploading client ANI/ALI data to the then governing ALI database via the PS/ALI service in 1987.
  • Full automation of client ANI/ALI data extraction, processing, and uploads via PS/ALI to the ALI database began in 1999.  (Prior to this PBX configuration downloads were automated but manually initiated; data processing was automated but manually initiated; PS/ALI data uploads were manually initiated; and, Tone Commander (formerly Proctor) uploads were manually initiated.)
  • ALIPro Services was formally created as an LCSI service offering in 1999.

Sources

Wikipedia, 911, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/9-1-1#Enhanced_9-1-1

Union County Emergency Services, Dispatch Magazine, https://www.countyofunion.org/site/cpage.asp?cpage_id=180009766&sec_id=180003667.

LCSI and ALIPro Services documentation