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911 Awareness

1.     If you have a newer, GPS equipped cellular phone, we now have the ability to more accurately pinpoint where you are.   Previously, cell phone calls to 9-1-1 would come up with the location of the cell phone tower transmitting the signal to 9-1-1.


2.     Some cellular telephone service providers have enabled 9-1-1 calling from an underfunded or zero balance “Pay and Talk” phone.  Check with your provider to see if this feature is available to you.


3.     A landline is your best defence when it comes to getting accurate phone number and location information to 9-1-1.  If you are a VoIP (voice over internet protocol) phone user, we would strongly advise you become familiar with how to update your new location for times when you move or travel with your phone adapter.  Please read the details provided by the VoIP supplier to determine if they are registered and providing true enhanced 9-1-1 service. This will avoid delays and possible serious consequences due to delayed or incorrect information in routing your call to the appropriate 9-1-1 call centre.


4.     Be prepared to give details!   When calling 9-1-1, you will be asked a series of questions about your location and what type of emergency you’re experiencing.  The detailed questioning is for the safety of not only YOU the caller and for crews responding to the scene, but also ensures that adequate and proper resources respond to the emergency.


5.     9-1-1 should NEVER be programmed into a speed dial.  This prevents accidental dialing of the 9-1-1 service.


6.     Do your part to keep 9-1-1 phone lines available for emergency calls only!   Become familiar with non-emergency numbers for emergency services (police, fire, ambulance, public works) before you need their services.  9-1-1 should never be treated as a 411 service, even for these agencies.


7.     Never hang up on 9-1-1 until the 9-1-1 operator tells you to.  If you cannot be reached on callback by 9-1-1 in the event of an accidental hang up or disconnection, an emergency responder will attend your residence.


8.     Never call 9-1-1 to tell us not to come.  If, for example, you’ve accidentally tripped a fire alarm or smoke detector that is connected to an alarm monitoring company, call the alarm company first to report the false alarm and give them the details.  The alarm company will then contact 9-1-1 to inform them of the false call.  If you, instead, call     9-1-1, the operator has no way of knowing who is calling even with the automatic phone number and location information that is provided to them. 


9.     Do you have your home address/phone # clearly marked by all phones?  Remember the person calling 9-1-1 may be a visitor to your residence or a child who may not know the information. 


10.  Remember to ensure that your house number is clearly visible from the street.