What is Enhanced 9-1-1?
Enhanced 9-1-1, or E9-1-1, is a system which routes an emergency call to the 9-1-1 center closest to the caller, AND automatically displays the caller’s phone number and address. The 9-1-1 telecommunicator will typically ask the caller to verify the information, which appears on his or her computer screen.
When should I use 9-1-1?
9-1-1 is only to be used in emergency situations. An emergency is any situation that requires immediate assistance from the police/sheriff, the fire department or an ambulance. If you are ever in doubt of whether a situation is an emergency you should call 9-1-1. It’s better to be safe and let the 9-1-1 telecommunicator determine if you need emergency assistance.
Do not call 9-1-1:
- For information
- For directory assistance
- For paying tickets
- As a prank
- For departmental complaints
- For information on weather warning sirens. Tune into your local television or radio station instead.
If you call 9-1-1 by mistake, do not hang up. Tell the telecommunicator what happened so they know there isn’t an emergency. In some cases, an officer/deputy may be dispatched to verify that no emergency exists.
How do I make a 9-1-1 call?
- In an emergency, dial 9-1-1 on your phone. It’s a free call. You can use any kind of phone: push button, rotary, cellular/wireless, cordless or pay phone. Remember, in instances of power outages, your cordless phone may not work!
- Stay calm and state your emergency.
- Speak loudly and clearly. Give the 9-1-1 telecommunicator your name, phone number and the address where help is needed.
- Answer the telecommunicator’s questions. Stay on the telephone if it’s safe to do so and don’t hang up until the telecommunicator tells you to.
What if I don’t speak English?
When necessary, a 9-1-1 telecommunicator can add an interpreter from an outside service to the line. A non-English speaking caller may hear a sort conversation in English and some click sounds as the interpreter is added to the line
What if I am deaf or hearing/speech impaired?
All communication centers in Tazewell County have special text telephones for responding to 9-1-1 calls from deaf or hearing/speech impaired callers. If a caller uses a TTY/TDD, they should:
- Stay calm, place the phone receiver in the TTY and dial 9-1-1.
- After the call is answered, press the TTY keys several times. This may help shorten the time necessary to respond to the call.
- Give the telecommunicator time to connect their TTY. If necessary, press the TTY keys again. The 9-1-1 telecommunicator should answer and type “GA” for Go Ahead.
- Tell what is needed: police, fire or ambulance. Give your name, phone number and the address where help is needed.
- Stay on the telephone if it is safe. Answer the telecommunicator’s questions.
If a deaf or hearing/speech imparied caller doesn’t have a TTY/TDD, the caller should call 9-1-1 from a residential phone (not a celluar or voice over internet phone) and remain on the line. Remaining on the line leaves the line open. The caller’s address will be displayed on the telecommunicator’s screen and help will be sent.
What if I make a prank 9-1-1 call?
It’s a prank call when someone calls 9-1-1 for a joke or calls 9-1-1 and hangs up. Prank calls not only waste time and money, they can also be dangerous. If 9-1-1 lines or telecommunicators are busy with prank calls, someone with a real emergency may not be able to get the help they need. In the State of Illinois, making prank 9-1-1 calls is considered disorderly conduct, a Class A misdemeanor.
Information in part provided by the National Emergency Number Association.