San Francisco opened a brand new high-tech 911 call center on Wednesday. But early Thursday morning, the city’s 911 system crashed, and dispatchers were handling calls with pen and paper.

On Wednesday, the Examiner trumpeted the news that San Francisco was reopening its Western Addition 911 dispatch center after $9 million worth of upgrades.

“The opening of this new and improved Dispatch Center is a critical step forward in our work to protect the safety and well-being of all San Franciscans,” Mayor London Breed said in a statement. “This state-of-the-art facility underscores our dedication to public safety and commitment to supporting the life-saving work of our 911 Dispatchers.”

Not so fast. The Chronicle reports the city’s entire 911 system crashed on Thursday morning, not even one day later, forcing dispatchers to handle calls using pen and paper. According to KRON4, the computer outage lasted from about 5 am to 7:30 am Thursday morning.

The crash was limited to the computer-aided dispatch (CAD) system, and did not affect residents’ abilities to make calls, nor dispatchers ability to take those calls. The crash may have been completely unrelated to the new call center, though obviously, it’s a bad look the day after they just opened the revamped call center. The cause of the outage is still unknown, though the city’s Department of Emergency Management says this just illustrates why these and more upgrades are needed.  

“We are always ready for this. We have to be, because there are many circumstances that can require us to rely on redundant dispatch systems,” the Department of Emergency Management said in a statement to KRON4. “The purpose of our new CAD replacement project is to replace the current system, which is [at its] end of life. This is why the CAD replacement project is a top priority for the department.”

It is true that the new Western Addition call center is part of a larger $44 million upgrade to the entire system, and it’s great that the city is being proactive about upgrading it. They’re still procuring vendors and contracts for that larger overhaul, which hopes to modernize the system’s hardware, software, and networking capabilities. That project is slated to be completed in about two or three years.

According to the mayor’s press release, “San Francisco’s Dispatch Center, one of the top 25 busiest in the U.S., receives an average of 3,200 calls every day.”

Related: Oakland’s 911 System Fails After Thursday Afternoon Technical Glitch [SFist]

Image via City of San Francisco