Morgan County and city officials have taken the first step to have the enhanced 911 phone system installed for countywide use, but they say implementation could take several years.

Members of the Morgan County Commission and the Morgan City Council met jointly last week and approved a resolution supporting the installation of the E-911 system, which uses a computer data base to automatically tell dispatchers the origin of a call.The feature has proven vital when callers have been too distraught, or in some cases too young, to give dispatchers an address.

Morgan Mayor David Rich said that installation is still several years away and much work remains to be done on the existing phone lines to prepare for the 911 system.

Rich said the existing telephone system has only 16 long-distance lines, and if 16 people are using them, "emergency calls are hard to get through."

Rich said he was pleased about the passage of the resolution and praised the enhanced 911 concept as "a heck of a good system."

The E-911 system has been operating in Weber County for more than a year, and officials there have credited it with saving many lives.

Davis County currently has a basic 911 system, but is planning to switch to the enhanced 911 system on July 1.