Texting 911, as well as calling, is now an option in San Mateo County

by Contributed Content on October 11, 2018

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All San Mateo County Law Enforcement and Fire Agencies’ 911 Dispatch Centers are now equipped to receive and respond to mobile phone 911 text messages. All phones or devices must include a text or data plan, be text capable, and have their location services enabled to send a text message to 911.

This technology directly benefits members of our deaf, hard of hearing and speech-impaired communities as they will now have a more efficient and effective way to request emergency services in times of need. Additionally, those who find themselves in a situation where it may be too dangerous to dial 911 will have another option to call for help during an emergency. Examples include: a domestic abuse situation, an active shooter incident, or an incident that has caused injury resulting in an inability to speak. Otherwise, it is always best to dial 911 and speak with dispatcher directly.

Here are some helpful tips when using the Text to 911 service:
– Always provide the exact location of the emergency
– Text messages should be brief and easy to understand
– Do not use abbreviations, emojis or slang

Texts can only be received in English at this time; this service will be available in additional languages in the near future

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