HC Deb 07 March 1968 vol 760 c119W
1. Sir T. Beamish

asked the Postmaster-General why it is technically possible for a subscriber who has hung up after completing a telephone call to be charged for further time owing to a mechanical failure to record the end of the call; and what steps he is taking to correct his fault which results in overcharging.

Mr. Joseph Slater

The duration of an operator-controlled call is recorded on a clock which stops automatically as soon as the caller's telephone is replaced. But, if the telephone is lifted again almost immediately to make a fresh call, the clock will restart if the operator has not had a chance to disconnect it. To prevent overcharging, operators are trained to disconnect promptly, and customers are advised to leave a brief interval between successive calls.

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