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Help 9-1-1 Help You FAQ's


Montgomery County 9-1-1 would like to remind callers of three important messages:

1.  Give your location.
It is important for callers to provide the exact location of the emergency—especially when calling from a wireless phone. Most wireless calls are received at the 9-1-1 call centers with an approximate location; however there are many instances when the 9-1-1 call center does not receive location information. By providing the exact location (city/county, street names, etc) it will assist in dispatching the appropriate emergency response to the precise location of the emergency.

2.  Always stay on the line.
When callers hang up, it could mean that something has gone very wrong.  9-1-1 call takers will attempt to call back. Hang-ups can delay appropriate emergency assistance and tie up 9-1-1 lines longer than necessary.

3.  When calling 9-1-1, always answer the questions.
It is not unusual for callers in crisis to become upset or misunderstand why call taker’s questions are important. By asking questions, the call taker is able to differentiate important information that will result in the correct emergency response and personnel being dispatched to the scene.

When should you call 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. Be safe and let the 9-1-1 call taker determine if you need emergency assistance.


Examples of When to Call 9-1-1:

    Heart attack or stroke
    House fire
    Domestic violence
    Burglary or theft in progress
    Car accidents
    Suspicious activities
    Anything else that seems like an emergency!


Do not call 9-1-1

    for information
    when the power is out
    to report a broken fire hydrant
    when your water pipes burst
    to get a ride for doctor's appointment
    for paying tickets
    for your pet
    as a prank


Never Prank Call 9-1-1

When someone calls 9-1-1 for a joke, or calls 9-1-1 and hangs up, the call is considered a Prank call. If 9-1-1 lines or call takers are busy with prank calls, people with real emergencies may not be able to get the help they need. In Texas, it's against the law to make prank 9-1-1 calls.

Non-English Speaking Callers
Some 9-1-1 call centers have bilingual 9-1-1 call takers and dispatchers; however if there is not one available, the 9-1-1 call taker can add on an interpreter through the use of an interpreting service. These services offer translations in more than 140 languages.  When utilizing an interpreting service, the caller may hear a short conversation in English and some clicking sounds as an interpreter is added to the 9-1-1 call.

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