A fiber optic communication line cut Thursday morning was repaired by the afternoon, restoring 911 service to several St. Clair County communities.
The line was cut about 9:40 a.m. Thursday, disrupting 911 service for the communities of St. Libory, Freeburg, Smithton and New Athens.
Bill Gamblin, executive director of the St. Clair County Emergency Telephone Systems Board, said the service only was disrupted for 30 or 40 minutes as the contingency plan required by the Illinois Commerce Commission was implemented.
Gamblin said individuals were sent to telephone central offices in the communities impacted to staff what's known as Knox boxes in order to intercept 911 calls. The individuals then relayed the information to the dispatch center via radios.
By 4 p.m. Thursday, the fiber optic communication line that was cut south of Belleville had been repaired, Gamblin said. The 911 calls once again were being handled by the normal dispatch center.