Text to 9-1-1
Text-to-911 is Now Available in Humboldt County
The Humboldt County Sheriff's Office Emergency Communications Center is now equipped to receive and respond to mobile phone SMS Text to 9-1-1 messages. This service is available for use by the deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired, and in situations where it is too dangerous to make a voice call to 9-1-1.
While calling 9-1-1 during an emergency is still the preferred way to ask for help, residents and visitors to the county are encouraged to "Call if you can, text if you can't."
How do you text to 9-1-1?
- Enter the numbers “911” in the “To” or “Recipient” field;
- The first text to 9-1-1 should be short, include the address and the location of the emergency, and ask for police, fire or ambulance;
- Push the “Send” button;
- A dispatcher will respond to the text
- Answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 dispatcher;
- Text in simple words – no abbreviations, slang or emojis;
- Keep text messages short.
Text to 9-1-1 requires a cell phone that has the capability to send text messages, and location services must be enabled. Standard text-messaging rates apply. While currently, the texting service is only available in English, other language solutions are in development and will be implemented as soon as they become available. Similarly, the system cannot receive photos and videos at this time.
Tips on texting 9-1-1 in an emergency:
- Be sure to include clear information about the location (including city) of the emergency with the type of help needed (police, fire, or medical) in the first text message sent to 911. Emergency personnel cannot always determine your location.
- Stay on the line until the dispatcher closes the dialog, if it is safe to do so.
- Text to 9-1-1 cannot be sent to more than one person (group message). Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.
- Text to 9-1-1 is not available if you are roaming.
- If Text to 9-1-1 is not available in your area, you should receive a message from the wireless carrier stating that Text to 9-1-1 is not available and that you must place a voice or relay call to 9-1-1.
- If you are deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech disabled, and Text to 9-1-1 is not available, use a TTY or telecommunications relay service, if available.
- Photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1.
- Don’t forget to silence your phone if you don’t want to be heard.
- Do not text and drive