New '585' Area Code Required on Calls Beginning Aug. 17

BUFFALO, N.Y. - Western New York's new 585 area code becomes official Saturday, Aug. 17.

Beginning that day, callers must dial the new area code to reach residents and businesses in Orleans, Genesee, Monroe and Wyoming counties, as well as portions of Livingston, Ontario, Yates, Steuben and Allegany counties. Callers will no longer be able to use the 716 area code to reach those counties.

People who forget to dial the new 585 code will hear a recording telling them the call cannot be completed and that they need to redial using the correct area code.

The 716 area code will continue to be used on calls to phone numbers in Erie, Niagara, Cattaraugus and Chautauqua counties, as well as the Tonawanda and Oil Spring Indian Reservations.

"The last nine months have served as an adjustment period for Western New York," said Verizon New York President Paul Crotty. "We hope most residents and business have used the transition period to change numbers on their stationery, personal checks and business cards, as well to reprogram automatic dialers and other telecommunications equipment. Friends, family and business contacts also should have the new area code."

The new area code was created to meet the growing demand for phone numbers in Western New York. The 585 number was assigned to the region by NeuStar Inc., the administrator of the North American Numbering Plan.

The creation of a new area code has no impact on Verizon's rates or local calling areas. A call that was a local call before the new area code was created will remain a local call and a call that was billed as a toll call prior to the new area code will continue to be billed at the same rate.

Charges for calls to 411 (directory assistance service) will remain the same and there will be no change in dialing 911 emergency services.

To place a call between the two area codes, telephone customers must dial "1" plus the area code and the seven-digit number, just as they do when calling another area code across the country. Even local calls must include "1" and the area code when dialing from one area code to another.

For the last several months, Verizon has conducted customer education programs, including advertising and mailings, to inform area residents and businesses of the change.

Additional information is available by calling 1-800-322-3558 or by visiting www.verizon.com online.

Verizon Communications

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 135.1 million access line equivalents and 30.3 million Verizon Wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. With more than $67 billion in annual revenues and approximately 241,000 employees, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.