911 is a nationally recognized, easy to remember, no-cost method of contacting law enforcement, fire and emergency medical service agencies. Since 911 is for emergencies, it’s common to wonder if making the call is the right thing to do. Emergencies are any situation where law enforcement, fire fighters or medical help is needed. If you are unsure, call 911 and a call taker will talk you through your situation and get the appropriate help.
Calling 911 is stressful but call-takers are trained to help you. Knowing what to expect can make calling go smoothly and get you any needed help.
When Calling 911
Remain calm... Speak slowly and clearly.
Explain why you are calling... Explain what you are reporting. Describe if the situation is still happening or not. 911 operators will ask questions about the Who, What, Where, When, Why & How of the incident.
Give the address... Give the exact location/address of the situation. Include street or apartment numbers, floor, and any information that will help emergency responders find the correct location.
Give your name and current location... While not required, giving your name helps with any investigations that occur.
Give the telephone number from where you are calling... Provide this information in case more information is later needed.
Stay on the line. Do not hang up... Do not hang up until the 911 operator releases your call. Provide all the information you have. Situations change constantly and updated information may be needed.
Crimes in progress
Offender at the scene of the crime
Witnesses at the scene of the crime
Any incident involving injuries
Explain your situation.
Answer all questions and follow directions as instructed.