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A growing community and a new emergency service have focused attention on residents' addresses.

Utah County's new E-911 system has made it necessary for officials to tackle the increasing problem of incomplete or inaccurate addresses, said Payson Postmaster Richard Bell."All communities in Utah County will be on the (E-911) system in the next two years," Bell said. "This system will lock onto an emergency call and print up the address on the computer screen."

Subsequently, a dispatcher will send an appropriate emergency service to the address, which could spell the difference between life and death in certain situations, Bell said.

Addresses should include the correct house or apartment number, street name and suffix (such a lane, street or avenue), he said. The residence should have visible house numbers, and if a mail receptacle is outside the house, it should also bear the address clearly.

"An address, for example, that's not accurate but used to be good enough may now just create confusion," he said.

Local growth has also prompted the officials' request, he said. "As more houses are built, and as more business - including the post office - get bigger, we unfortunately don't have the personal closeness that we had in the good old days."

Sorting changes also require proper addressing, he said. "Much of the mail is now sorted with computerized equipment that reads addresses and sprays on a bar code to represent that address."

The machines find incorrect addresses indecipherable and require the mail to be hand-sorted, costing time and money, Bell said.

Officials may be contacting residents about correcting their addresses.

For more information, contact Bell at 465- 2372.