Arapahoe introduced Text-to-9-1-1 service in all communities within the county. Text-to-9-1-1 is supported by all seven PSAPs (Public Safety Answering Points).
- What is Text to 9-1-1?
Text to 9-1-1 refers to the ability to send text messages to local 9-1-1 call centers during an emergency. All dispatch centers in Arapahoe County are currently equipped to receive and handle text-to-9-1-1 calls.
- When should Text to 9-1-1 be used?
Call if you can, text if you must. You should only text 9-1-1 if it is the only option and making a voice call to 9-1-1 is not possible. This service will be very useful to those who are hard of hearing, deaf, or speech-impaired. Some other examples would be:
- The caller is facing a threatening situation, and a voice call could increase the threat.
- The caller is injured or suffered a medical condition and cannot speak.
- The caller is in a remote location and can only send out a text message.
- Phone lines and cell phone towers are overwhelmed, and only a text can get through..
- How Do I Text 9-1-1?
- Enter the numbers "911" in the "To" field (do not enter with dashes like "9-1-1")
- The first text message to 911 should be brief and contain the location of the emergency and type of help needed
- Push the send button
- Be prepared to answer questions and follow instruction from the 9-1-1 call taker
- Text in simple words – do not use abbreviations
- Once you have initiated a text-to-9-1-1 conversation, do not delete the message or turn off your phone until the dispatcher tells you it is ok.
- Do all wireless providers offer this service?
Yes. The FCC now requires that all carries and over-the-top applications support text to 9-1-1 within six (6) months of initial operation within Araphaoe County.
- Can I Text 9-1-1 outside of Arapahoe County?
If you send a text message to 9-1-1 outside of Arapahoe County and that area does not currently receive text messages, you will receive a message indicating that texting 9-1-1 is not available and you should make a voice call to 9-1-1.
- Can I Text 9-1-1 from my free texting application?
Yes. Over-the-top texting applications is expected to meet the same requirements as wireless carriers.
- Can I send a video or pictures to 9-1-1?
I have a video or picture of a crime in progress. No, photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1 at this time.
- Will the 9-1-1 Center know my location when I send a text?
If I am unable to text 9-1-1, will the 9-1-1 call center automatically know my location? When you make a voice call to 9-1-1, the call taker will typically receive your phone number and your approximate location automatically. This is called “Enhanced 9-1-1” or “E9-1-1.” However, when you text 9-1-1 from a wireless phone, the call taker will not receive this automated information. For this reason, if you send a text message to 9-1-1, it is important to give the 9-1-1 call taker an accurate address or location as quickly as possible.
- Where is text to 9-1-1 service available?
You can download a PDF list of agencies that currently support text to 9-1-1 from the Federal Communication Commission.