- If possible, get to a safe location before dialing. If you are calling to report a fire, exit the burning structure before calling.
- Try to stay calm; speak clearly.
- State your address, or describe your location as completely as possible using cross streets or landmarks.
- State what help you need: police, fire or EMS/ambulance.
- Answer all questions.
- Stay on the line — do not hang up until the operator says it’s OK.
Texting to 911 Tips
Citizens who find themselves in an emergency situation and unable to make a voice call to 9-1-1 should remember these steps:
- Don’t text and drive
- In the first text message send the location and type of emergency.
- Text in simple words – Send a short text message without abbreviations or slang.
- Be prepared to answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 call taker.
- Photos and videos cannot be sent to 911 at this time.
- Text-to-911 cannot include more than one person.
- Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.
- Voice calls to 9-1-1 are always the best and fastest way get help.
Text-to-911 service is not available everywhere and is subject to the same limitations and challenges as all wireless calls. If you do not receive a text response from 9-1-1, try to contact 9-1-1 another way.