Text to 9-1-1 Tips


Text-to-9-1-1 Tips



Overall Messaging Theme – 9-1-1: Call if you can, text if you can’t. Can I send a text to 9-1-1?


Texting to 9-1-1 is not available in most areas. The 9-1-1 industry is committed to working with wireless carriers and the FCC to implement text-to-9-1-1 throughout the country in the next few years.

You may check with your local 9-1-1 center or the FCC website to see if it is available in your area. {www.fcc.gov/cgb/text-to-911-deployments}

When text-to-9-1-1 is available in your area please remember: texting should only be used when you are unable to make a voice call to 9-1-1.


How to text 9-1-1 in an emergency:


• Enter the numbers “911” in the “To” field;

• The first text message to 9-1-1 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 instructions from the 9-1-1 call taker.

• Text in simple words – do not use abbreviations.

• Keep text messages brief and concise.


Below are a few things to know if you need to text 9-1-1:


• Text location information is not equal to current location technology.

• As with all text messages, 9-1-1 messages can take longer to receive, can get out of order or may not be received.

• Text-to-9-1-1 is not available if you are roaming.

• A text or data plan is required to place a text-to-9-1-1

• If texting to 9-1-1 is not available in your area, or is temporarily unavailable, you will receive a message indicating that texting 9-1-1 is not available and to contact 9-1-1 by other means.

• Photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1 at this time.

• Text-to-9-1-1 cannot include more than one person. Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.

Do not text and drive!