443 area code goes into effect

MARYLAND WATCH

November 18, 1997

Bell Atlantic's plan to add two new Maryland area codes took a step forward yesterday: The 443 area code went into effect.

Phone lines that are now in operation will be able to keep the old area code, said Bell Atlantic spokeswoman Sandra Arnette. The 443 area code was designed for new phone lines in Baltimore and eastern Maryland, an area now covered by the 410 code.

Arnette said new phone customers will still be able to get numbers with the 410 area code until about the end of this year, when the supply of 410 numbers is projected to run out.

"If you know that you specifically want 410, you might need to get that right now," Arnette said. "Right now, there's some flexibility. Soon, there won't be."

As of yesterday, the 443 code was entered into the 911 emergency database as well as into Bell Atlantic's billing, repair and information systems. Arnette said the area code is available on a voluntary basis to certain phone lines in Glen Burnie. She said no residents or businesses have yet selected the new area code.

Another new area code, 240, is slated to go into effect in 1998 in Western Maryland.

Pub Date: 11/18/97

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