Public Safety ~ Frequently Asked Questions

What is 9-1-1?
9-1-1 is a very simple number that can be easily remembered in a very overwhelming moment during an emergency. When you are involved or witness a crime, accident of medical emergency, you can become very anxious and have a hard time recalling a 7-digit number to call for help. Dialing 9-1-1 will be treated different that a normal call. When you dial 9-1-1 your call will be routed to a Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) with you Name, Address, and phone number that you are calling from.

Is 9-1-1- really the first place I should call?
Yes! Calling 9-1-1 first can drastically increase the probability of a successful outcome to the situation at hand. Calling 9-1-1 first puts you in direct contact with a dispatcher that can send the specific help you need, in the most efficient manner. Remember to education children to that are in a dangerous situation to call 9-1-1 first. It comes natural to most children to call their parents or caregiver for help, but in most cases, this delays getting them the help they need by adding an extra step in the process.

When Should I call 9-1-1?
If you have witnessed or are a victim of a crime.
If you smell or see smoke coming from an odd location.
If you see flames or fire.
If you have witnessed or were involved in an accident.
If you are having or have witnessed a medical emergency or possible poisoning\overdose
If a child / senior citizen / handicapped person is lost, confused, frightened, or needs special assistance.
If there is any situation that is potentially dangerous and you are not sure who to call.

What do I do if there’s a FIRE in my home ?
1. GET OUT OF THE HOUSE IMMEDIATLEY (do not call 9-1-1 from you house phone)
2. Use your cell phone or a neighbors phone to call 9-1-1

If I am unable to give direction can you find me.
In most instances, when you call 9-1-1 your location information will be attached to the phone call for the dispatcher to see. If you call from a landline or VoIP phone the address that is registered with the phone company will be provided to the dispatcher. If you call from a wireless phone one of two locations will be given. Depending on you cell carrier, the latitude and longitude of the cell tower that the call was received on will be provided. In most cases the latitude and longitude will be triangulated via multiple cell towers to give the location of phone itself.

Can I send a text message to 9-1-1?
No, the technology does not yet exist for text messages to be delivered reliably and include location information that we would require.

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