Soon-to-launch business directory 0133 has partnered with Mediaworks and deployed a free-to-call service to take non-emergency queries and ease pressure on already strained emergency phone numbers in Christchurch. The number, 0800 96 0133, will be available on Thursday and Friday this week between 8am—10pm to assist the public, Christchurch emergency services, Civil Defence and Local Government and Mediaworks will communicate this service as a joint initiative through all its media channels.
0133 was to launch its free telephone information service next month, but has brought forward its operations to help with the Christchurch emergency.
“We’ve been hearing about emergency numbers being swamped by callers seeking all kinds of basic information, so we acted to fill that gap and to help with the non-emergency calls,” co-founder Prentice Robb says. “So many people don’t have any online access so they have no way of finding out even the most basic information. They’ll be able to call this number and ask pretty much anything they need to know—if we can’t tell them straight away, we’ll find out and phone or text them with the answer."
Callers who are clearly distressed will be directed to call 111.
Telecom has also come to the party, offering free calls on public phones and collecting analogue phones around the country for use in Christchurch.