10-Digit Dialing Required In The 405 Beginning Saturday
The Oklahoma Corporation Commission has announced the 405 area code would be getting a new code — 572 — in May, but that won't be the first thing people notice when making a local call.
The first noticeable change comes a month before the new area code gets added - when 10-digit dialing will be required starting April 24th.
"If you’re making a local call within the 405 area code, you’re going to have to dial the area code first,” Matt Skinner, a spokesperson for OCC, said.
Skinner said if you don't use the area code, you'll get an automated voice message reminding you to do so.
The move to 10-digit calling is a necessary step in adding the new 572 code on May 24th. Skinner said one way people can prepare is by updating the contacts in their devices to include the area code.
The decision to add a new area code comes after the North American Numbering Plan Administrator warned the OCC that the 405 code was on track to exhaust. To exhaust an area code means there won't be enough numbers to meet the needs of the area.
OCC decided to overlay the 405 area with the new code to have enough options for people moving forward. The addition also ensures those currently with a 405 area code will be able to keep their number.
The other option would have been to divide the area code in half, which wasn't a solution for those who already had numbers in the 405.
This isn't the first time a new area code was added to an existing one in Oklahoma.
In 2011, the 918 area code in northeast Oklahoma, which was also on track to exhaust, added the 539 area code.
Skinner said that one factor that contributes to an exhaust is because of population growth - but another factor is the amount of devices that require a telephone number.
"There [are] many uses of phone numbers that we don't think about, server farms, of which Oklahoma has some huge computer server farms," Skinner said. "Call centers use thousands, perhaps millions, of phone numbers."
The 405 area currently serves the Oklahoma City metropolitan area, and as far north as Payne County and as far south as Norman.
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