Calling 9-1-1: Fairfax Prepares Day 21
But in a high-stress situation, do you know what information is needed? Is your home clearly marked. Do you know the public safety non-emergency phone number?
Here are a few tips to consider when calling 9-1-1:
- Use 9-1-1 for emergencies only.
- Stay calm and help the call taker help you.
- Determine the location of the emergency, if possible, before you call.
- Texting 9-1-1 is NOT an option; you must dial 9-1-1 and speak with a call taker.
- Teach your children how to call 9-1-1.
- Do not give old phones to children as toys. A wireless phone with no active service can still dial 9-1-1.
- If you accidentally call 9-1-1, stay on the line and tell the call taker that you do not have an emergency.
- Post your home address clearly and prominently so first responders can find you.
- Pull over when driving, if possible. This reduces the chance of a dropped call.
- Tips for non-English callers and hearing or speech-impaired callers.
We receive more than 1 million 9-1-1 calls a year. Hopefully you don’t have to call, but if you do, make sure it’s an emergency. If you’re not sure, call 9-1-1, but if it’s clearly a non-emergency, then call the non-emergency number.
THE ASK: 9-1-1 is an easy to remember phone number, but you can help reduce unnecessary calls if your situation is not an emergency. Add a new contact to your phones for the public safety non-emergency number at 703-691-2131, TTY 711, and know when to call it.