Tennessee board details impact of Christmas bombing on 911 systems

Ground zero of the Nashville Christmas Day bomb, just outside the AT&T Building on Second Avenue. (Photo: John Partipilo)

Sixty-six emergency communications districts in Tennessee experienced service interruptions, lasting more than 97 hours, as a result of the Christmas morning suicide bombing on Second Avenue in downtown Nashville, according to a report released earlier this month by the Tennessee Emergency Communications Board.

Working in tandem with AT&T, the contractor for the state's emergency communications system, the board made contact with each 911 district impacted by the bombing and unveiled its report at a board meeting May 5. The AT&T hub was among the buildings blasted when, according to police, a suicide bomber detonated a device inside an RV parked just 20 feet from the building.

The goal of the report was to identify the impact of the Christmas morning bombing on 911 systems, what went wrong that the impact on the 66 districts and what can be done to avoid similar situations should disaster strike an emergency communications system again.