Presidential Press Conference Now. Toll Free Helps With Info.

Presidential news conference going on right now about the major ongoing oil spill decimating the Gulf Of Mexico. Toll Free numbers have been established throughout state and federal governments to help bring information to the officials and to the affected residents about this natural disaster:

Report oiled wildlife
• To report oiled wildlife, please call (866) 557-1401 and leave a message. Messages will be checked hourly. Individuals are urged not to attempt to help injured or oiled animals, but to report any sightings to the toll free number.

Report oil sightings
• To report oil on shoreline or request volunteer information: Call (866) 448-5816

To report fraud
• The Attorney General’s office reported instances of fraud from companies claiming to be BP training contractors. Free volunteer training will be available through Santa Rosa County. To report possible cases of fraud, call the Attorney General’s Office fraud hotline at (866) 966-7226.

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Advisory Committee Recommendation: Release 855

In recent months, members of the Tollfree Advisory Committee at SMSGOV.com have been repeatedly warning of the decline of available toll free phone numbers. To offset the anticipated impact of this scarcity of 1-800 numbers, the Tollfree Advisory Committee strongly recommends the release by the FCC of the reserved toll free area codes in 2010.

800 Number Shortages Lead FCC to Consider Rationing

The force behind the demand for toll-free numbers is not only the traditional business use: a growing market is comprised of residential customers. If rationing is implemented, obtaining a new toll free number will be more difficult than ever before.

The popularity of the 1-800 number, launched in 1967, led the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to add the new pre-fixes 888 and 877 in the mid-1990s. When availability of those numbers plummeted, 866 was added in 2000 to overcome the shortage. Since then, there have been no new pre-fixes introduced and supplies are rapidly shrinking.

Read more here.