Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Texting to 9-1-1: What You Need to Know

As technology moves forward, more and more carriers and areas are providing the option to text to 9-1-1 for emergencies. Having the option to text to 9-1-1 can be useful in times where talking on the phone could put someone in danger. But what much of the public does not realize is that many carriers and areas of the country still do not have the capabilities to provide texting to 9-1-1.

For example, in some areas of Texas, Verizon users now have the capability to text to 9-1-1 while other carriers do not provide this option yet. If you were to text to 9-1-1, you would most likely receive a bounce back message requesting that you call 9-1-1 for help. As of September of this year, all the major cell phone carriers are required to provide a bounce back message if someone tries to text to 9-1-1. These carriers include Sprint, T-Mobile, AT&T and Verizon.
9-1-1 entities across the country are working hard so that all carriers can soon provide the public with the option of texting to 9-1-1, in the event that they cannot call 9-1-1 for help. In the meantime, remember, to ALWAYS contact 9-1-1 by making a voice call to ensure that you get help during an emergency situation. For the deaf or hard of hearing, remember to use a telecommunications relay service.

An emergency situation includes any of the following:
·         A fire

·         A crime

·         A car crash

·         A medical emergency

When you call 9-1-1, make sure you know your location and answer all the call-taker's questions. For more information on Text-to-9-1-1, please visit the FCC site at

A video clip of Text to 9-1-1 in Jonesboro, Arkansas

1 comment: