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      Officials: SC's new area code will be 854

      CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- South Carolina's coastline will have a new area code sometime in the near future: 854.

      Officials at the North American Numbering Plan Administration said Tuesday that a conversion date had not yet been set, but the 843 number is expected to run out by the fourth quarter of 2015.

      A decision has not been made on when the new 854 numbers will begin to be assigned.

      The new number will be South Carolina's first overlay code, officials confirmed, saying it will be used across the Pee Dee and Lowcountry as new numbers are needed.

      As a result, people in those area codes will have to dial all 10 digits of a phone number to reach their intended party.

      In September, officials announced the pending expiration of 843 numbers and a petition was filed with the state's public service commission to relieve the area code.

      The petition recommended a 13-month plan that would allow existing customers to keep their 843 area codes and phone numbers as well as roll out 10-digit dialing for the region. The change would give the area code an additional life span of 28 years, the petition states.

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