In April 2015, the first Tele Type (TTY) enabled satellite call boxes in Southern California were installed by the San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) operating as the San Bernardino Service Authority for Freeway Emergencies (SAFE). The 28 new installations along Highways 18, 38, 62, 95, 127, and 138 supplement the areas where standard call boxes have inconsistent or no cellular signal.
The San Bernardino SAFE call box network includes approximately 1,100 call boxes. Standard call boxes are equipped with a high-power cellular antenna coming off a 14-foot pole, allowing the call box to receive and maintain a signal where a hand-held mobile device may not be able to. However, at times, the standard digital call box equipment is not able to secure a consistent cellular signal in rural and mountainous areas of the county.
The system of call boxes is operated in close coordination with both the California Highway Patrol (CHP) and the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans). A professional call answering center answers the calls and helps motorists contact their auto clubs, friends or family members when assistance is needed. When necessary, public safety assistance such as law enforcement, paramedic and fire control may be dispatched by the CHP.
SANBAG has been responsible for the maintenance and operation of call boxes throughout San Bernardino County along most State Routes, Interstates and US Highways since 1990. For more information call the SANBAG offices at (909) 884-8276 or visit us online at www.SANBAG.ca.gov/commuter.
Tim Watkins, Chief of Legislative & Public Affairs
909.884.8276 | Office