Technical Assistance

Helpful 9-1-1 Hints

In the event of an emergency, time is of the essence, and every second counts. If you have an immediate need for Fire, Police and/or Paramedics, dial 9-1-1. Make sure to have all of the vital information needed to process your emergency call.  

(1)  Give your exact location along with any street names, landmarks, mile markers, or city/county names. 

(2) Do not hang up.  Stay on the line if you can.  Hangups can delay response times and telecommunicators will try to call you back.

(3) When you call 9-1-1 for help answer every question asked by the telecommunicator.  This helps them know what type of help you need and who to dispatch to your location.

Speaking Callers

  • Make sure that you're out of harm's way before calling 9-1-1 (i.e. If there is a fire, go to a safe place and then call 9-1-1)
  • Stay calm
  • Speak clearly
  • Provide the address, intersection or landmark of your emergency
  • Verify the telephone number you're calling from in case the line disconnects
  • Explain the nature of the call (I need a: Police/Sheriff, Fire, EMS/Ambulance)
  • If it is safe to do so, remain on the line to answer all of the Telecommunicator's questions
  • Once the call is complete, you may hang up unless there is a need for the dispatcher to stay on the line until police arrive

Non-Speaking Callers from a Landline

  • Remain Calm
  • Keep the line open (off the hook), and try to make some type of noise to indicate to the Telecommunicator that there is an emergency (i.e. clapping, breathing loud or tapping the handset)
  • The enhanced 9-1-1 system automatically identifies your established address if you are calling from a landline
  • The Telecommunicator will have emergency services dispatched to your location

TDD/TTY and 9-1-1

  • Speech and hearing impaired callers may utilize TDD/TTY (Telecommunications Device for the Deaf) to request emergency services. The following explains how to reach 9-1-1:
    • Dial 9-1-1 and connect to TTY
    • To activate the Telecommunicator's TTY, tap a few keys
    • Once 9-1-1 answers, type in the nature of the call (Police, Fire, Medical, Poison)
    • Provide your name, address and phone number as requested by the Telecommunicator
    • If safe, stay at your TTY until all questions have been answered
    • Once the call is complete, you may hang up

REMEMBER: The 9-1-1 system CANNOT receive or reply to text messages

Non English Speaking Callers
9-1-1 currently employs a Language Line which boasts over 140 language interpreters for non-English speaking callers. Upon identifying the need for an interpreter, the Telecommunicator will remain on the line while conferencing the Language Line with the appropriate language to further communicate with the caller to determine the emergency needs.


9-1-1 Preparedness

The following recommendations are helpful in the event of an emergency:

  • Keep your phone in a place that is readily accessible
  • Do not program 9-1-1 into your phone as it may be dialed unintentionally
  • Direct children/grandchildren in the home on how and when to use 9-1-1
  • Post your address and phone number on the refrigerator and other visible places within your home for others who may need the information in the case of an emergency
  • Make sure that your address is easily visible from the street
  • Know how to use 9-1-1 with the types of phones that you own
© 2017 East Texas Council of Governments. All rights reserved. | Website by: Site Street Home | About Us | Services | Contact Us | News | Privacy Policy | Site Map
Equal Opportunity Employer/Program
Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.
Deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech-impaired customers may contact Relay Texas: 800-735-2989 (TTY) and 711 (Voice). Equal opportunity is the law.