Comcast provides the Internet telephone service for three numbers in our large aging house. Three ports on the Comcast modem feed a web of aging twisted pairs that run all around the house, some of them across the roof, some of them in ancient conduits in the concrete slab foundation.
When the massive rainstorm hit the SF Bay Area last week, line A held up fine; line B began developing horrible audio crackling on conversations during the day, then went dead in the early evening; and we didn't observe what happened on line C except that it definitely went dead at some point in the evening.
(The modem ports themselves, if you unplugged the house wiring and plugged in a single phone into each of them in succession, all remained fine.)
The mystery observation was a police car with two nice officers in our driveway in the middle of the first night, reporting a 911 call on line C, and insisting that protocol required that they check directly with the person sleeping in the room where the only phone using line C was connected.
A second 911 call from line C was also logged and transmitted to us by email the following morning, when lines B and C were still dead and remained dead all the following day.
Did Comcast do this? (They say, no way.) Can shorted out lines auto-dial 911? Other hypotheses?
(We have no auto-alarm systems of any kind in our house.)