Wednesday, May 22, 2024

RiverCom 911 announces emergency text-to-911 service

Available August 28


RiverCom 911 along with partner law, fire and EMS agencies in Chelan and Douglas Counties are pleased to announce Text-to-911 is now available to Chelan and Douglas residents and visitors as of August 28..

Cell phone users will be able to send a short message via text message to 911 for emergency help when unable to make a 911 voice call. Text-to-911 is intended primarily for use in four emergency scenarios:

       1) Individuals who are hearing impaired who need emergency assistance.

        2) Individuals unable to make a voice call due to a medical emergency that renders the person incapable of speech.

        3) Individuals in situations where speaking would put them in further danger such as reporting an in-progress home invasion, robbery, or domestic violence incident.

       4) Individuals in areas with poor cell coverage where a voice call may not connect but a text message can be sent.

“Text-to-911 is another layer of protection for residents and visitors in Chelan and Douglas Counties,” said Doug Jones, Executive Director of RiverCom. “Though you should always call 911 when you can, knowing you can text in certain situations and get immediate assistance is our valued reassuring and potentially lifesaving.”

Texting 911 can be done by typing “911” in the field for a phone number. No other numbers need to be used. Texting should be done through your wireless phones’ text messaging service and not from a third-party texting application.

Callers texting to 911 should follow these guidelines:

       1) Provide your exact address or location.

       2) Explain the type of emergency or help that is being requested.      

       3) Be prepared to answer any questions that the 911 telecommunicator texts back.

       4) Use plain language; do not use abbreviations, symbols, emoticons or photos.

       5) Messages should be as brief and concise as possible.


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