TIP: How to test your emergency call routing


Proper support for emergency calls is critical if you have a multi-site SIP trunk environment and/or an environment supporting nomadic users. An emergency call should automatically be routed to the correct Emergency Centre, so it is essential that the called party identification, as sent by the IPBX, includes the postal code corresponding to the originating site. In Belgium, there is one Emergency Centre per province and an additional one in Brussels. How can you check that emergency calls are going to the correct one?

You can read how emergency call handling can be performed in BELTUG’s “SIP, SIP Trunking and VoIP Application Notes” paper (point 2.1.7, p9).  To summarise

  • CALLED number:  Is your emergency call routed towards the correct Emergency Centre? The 1992 routing facility provides the ZIP code of the PBX address, for correct routing.  
  • CALLING number: For nomadic users, the IPBX should also be able to manipulate the calling party identification. Belgacom recommends the use of Emergency Virtual Numbers (EVN): the EVN number sent in the call relates to the building, not to the user. 

Three quick tests

So how do you test that calls from your environment are being correctly routed, without actually calling the emergency number?

  • The number 117 delivers a feedback message indicating in which Belgian province “this emergency call” would be handled. This test will confirm whether or not emergency calls will be routed towards the right ASTRID centre.  The test number should be available through all operators. 
  • Address information is not sent in a phone call.  The CLI linked to any emergency call can be verified by each customer, on . The owner + address of any number can be verified, provided it isn’t a secret number. The 1207 database is in fact the same as the Emergency Centres' EMR database, but EMR provides much more information to the Emergency Centres than what the users can see in 1207.
  • For  end-users, the numbers 1924 (NL) /1934 (FR) may be useful.  The feedback message of this automatic identifier gives you the CLI.  However, this is only valid for Belgacom's fixed network: other operators may use other numbers for this self-identification, or forward the call to Belgacom.


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