When to use the 9-1-1 system and when not to:
ONLY DIAL 9-1-1 FOR AN EMERGENCY!!! An emergency is: Any serious medical problem (i.e. chest pain, seizure, bleeding, serious wounds, person down etc.), Any type of fire, Any life threatening situation (i.e. fights, person with weapons, gas leaks etc.), Any crime in progress.
Non-emergency calls include: Not in progress incidents, intoxicated persons who are not disorderly, vehicles blocking the roadway or driveway, non-injury accidents, minor complaints. TIP: You should NOT program 9-1-1 into your phones speed dial feature. You will not forget the number and programming the number will make it easier to dial 9-1-1 by mistake.
You should not dial 9-1-1 to test your phone or the 9-1-1 System! This burdens the dispatchers with non-emergency calls and could prevent an actual emergency call from coming in.
Q: What happens if I dial 9-1-1 by mistake?
A: DO NOT hang up the phone, you will just get a call back. Stay on the phone and explain that you accidentally dialed 911 and that you do not have an emergency. If you hang up and/or don't answer when you are called back an officer will show up at your house.
Q: What should I expect when I call 9-1-1 with an emergency?
A: Listen carefully when your call is answered and briefly describe your emergency and where you are at. Answer all the dispatchers questions. Dispatchers are trained to ask specific questions for any given situation. This helps in prioritizing an appropriate response. Do not give false information to try to get a faster response. Never argue with a dispatcher and do not hang up until the dispatcher tells you it is ok to do so.
Q: What if I call 9-1-1 and I'm still in danger and can't answer their questions?
A: Stay on the phone. Tell the dispatcher you are still in danger, he/she will then ask you simple "yes" or "no" questions.