I decided to start agitating, so I posted about the 9-1-1 alarm on the phone's Amazon site. I'll be posting about it on other product review sites for the phone as well.
Verizon said I can "return" the phone and then rebuy it. So I guess I'll do that. Then if Casio hasn't come up with a fix within 30 days, I'll give up and get a different phone. :-( In the meantime, I'll be using G's phone when I go out to the land. Actually I'll probably bring them both because his phone isn't waterproof.
Here's the e-mail that I sent to Nelson at Casio:
Dear Casio Tech Support,
I need to know how to turn off the 9-1-1 alarm on my GzOne type S cell phone.
Earlier this week, I arrived at some property I own to discover that the chain across the driveway had been cut. Since the house there has been repeatedly robbed and vandalized, I stopped my truck out of sight of the house and dialed 9-1-1 on my new Casio GzOne. As soon as I hit send, the phone's speaker began emitting a loud siren-like alarm. I quickly closed the phone and waited quietly to see if anyone had been alerted by the alarm. The narrow road dead-ends at my driveway. If the thieves had been alerted to my presence by the alarm, my only means of escape would have been to attempt to back all the way out the narrow road to the highway. When no one reacted, I closed my truck's windows, covered the phone's speaker and dialed 9-1-1 again. The siren cut off as soon as the police answered. But it would have been much safer for me if it hadn't gone off at all.
I'm e-mailing you now because I need to know how to silence the 9-1-1 alarm. I go out to my property alone to check for criminal activity two or three times a week. With my old cell phone, whenever anyone suspicious showed up while I was there, I would quickly hide and call 9-1-1. But I can't call 9-1-1 on my new GzOne phone because the 9-1-1 siren will automatically alert the criminals to my presence.
When I called Casio tech support to find out how to silence this alarm, the customer support person stated that the alarm could not be silenced because it was required by FCC regulations. I went on the FCC's website but I can't find the regulation requiring a 9-1-1 alarm. I would like to know of the regulation number that calls for such an alarm. But more than that, I would like to know how to turn the alarm feature off. If it can't be silenced, I'm going to have to return this otherwise excellent phone to Verizon.
I'm not the only one who will have trouble with this. This feature will be a problem in many situations where people would call for help from 9-1-1. Think of a student at Columbine or Virginia Tech hiding from the gunman in a closet and trying to quietly call 9-1-1 to get help. Or imagine someone at home in bed who hears a burglar break the window downstairs. Quickly they reach for their cell phone to call 9-1-1. The last thing someone needs at that moment is a loud alarm going off when they hit send.
Thank you for your help with this matter, cdozo