A new ten-digit area code system will be implemented for residents in Indiana’s 812 area code region on September 6, 2014.
On March 1, residents will still be able to use the 812 area code, but should start using 10 digits when they make a call.
Spokesman for the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor Anthony Swinger explains why a new area code change is being implemented.
“It’s important to keep in mind that 930 is just being added to the 812 area,” Swinger says, “Anyone with an 812 number right now will keep his or her number after the change. The 930 numbers are going to be added after October 6. The reason for the new area code is because the 812 area code, which has stayed unchanged since 1947, is close to running out of numbers. The industry projects that in the middle of 2015, 812 will no longer have any numbers for new phones and customers. So, it’s necessary to add the new area code so there’s a large enough pool of numbers.”
The dialing system will help usher in the new 930 area code, which will take effect in the fall.
The new area code is being added using what is called the overlay method. Swinger says this method has been used by 37 states in the U.S. for area code change-overs since 2008.
The discussion to use an overlay or a split method was a year-long case that the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission ordered in July 2013.
After the case closed, the IURC decided that the overlay method would be the least disruptive. Swinger explains how the new system will affect residents in the 812 region.
“The changes will affect everyone to one degree or another,” Swinger says, “The main way the changes will affect folks in Bloomington and south central Indiana will be the need for 10 digit dialing for local calls. Instead of just dialing 7 digits, it will be necessary to dial 812 than the seven digits. What begins Saturday is a six month period to adjust to 10 digit dialing. If the old habit comes up in this grace period, the number will still go through.”
On September 6, residents can continue to use the 812 area code but will have to use ten digits to make a call. When October 6 rolls around, residents will have to begin using the new 930 area code and continue to use ten digits to place a call.