Dial 406 First? Here's Why.
You may have heard that Montana moving to a 10 digit dialing system and you may have wondered: Why?
The short answer is, it has to do with a change to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.
Montana and 36 other states have announced they will update their phone numbers to accommodate the new National Suicide Prevention Lifeline which is expected to work nationwide the same way the 911 emergency number does.
Without getting technical, the phone number change for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline means all residents in Montana must use a 406 area code on their phones for all in-state calls, whether they are local and long-distance. It's a minor inconvenience, but you'll get used to it. The goal for the Suicide Lifeline is for callers from anywhere in the U.S. to be connected with nearby suicide prevention assistance by calling an easy to remember 3-digit number similar to 911, which will remain the National Emergency use number.
In July of 2022, the new number, 988, will replace the current number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – which is: 1-800-273-8255.