Police Chief Jeffrey T. Gillen and Fire Chief Robert Valentine would like to share guidelines and tips in regard to accessing help in the midst of an emergency during National 9-1-1 Education Month.
According to the National Emergency Number Association, approximately 240 million calls are made to 911 each year in the United States. 9-1-1 Education Month is recognized across the country to conduct outreach and educate community members on 911 resources and practices.
Share information with responders
“If you ever find yourself in a situation where you need to call 911 for help, it is important to try to remain calm, if you can, so that you can provide the operator with the information they need,” Police Chief Gillen said.
“We also wish to remind everyone that it’s important to share as detailed information about your location as you can so that emergency responders can reach you as quickly as possible.”
In order to make sure residents can access help in an emergency, Police Chief Gillen and Fire Chief Valentine are providing the following safety tips from the National Association of State 911 Administrators (NASNA):
Reach 9-1-1 via Phone or Text
Residents can contact 911 through messaging as an alternative to a typical phone call
Text to 911 is available across the Commonwealth, and Groveland Police and Fire Departments wish to remind residents that 911 through messaging is an alternative to a typical phone call.
To contact emergency services by text message, simply enter 911 in the “To” field of the mobile device and then type a message into the message field. It is the same process that is used for sending a regular text message from a mobile device. It is important to make every effort to begin the text message indicating the town one is in and provide the best location information that one can.
Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, or in a situation where speaking is not possible can benefit from using messaging services to reach emergency services, but if possible a traditional voice call is the best way to reach 911.
Know One's Location
With wireless calls, 911 operators can locate callers, but more information may be needed in order for emergency services to find exact locations. Be prepared to provide detailed information on the location to assist the 911 operator.
Stay Calm and Don’t Hang Up
Telecommunicator’s try to determine whether or not there is an emergency or if someone is in need of assistance
Unless instructed to do otherwise, one should stay on the line when calling 9-1-1 in order to provide necessary information to the 911 operator. Even if one accidentally dials 9-1-1, they should stay on the line and inform the operator that there is no emergency and that the number was dialed accidentally.
While on the phone, please answer the telecommunicator’s questions. They are trying to determine whether or not there is an emergency or if someone is in need of assistance.
About National 9-1-1 Education Month
April is designated as National 9-1-1 Education Month, recognized by the United States Congress in 2008. According to NASNA, it aims to support the efforts of the National 911 Education Coalition through the promotion of resources and materials that help to educate about the optimal use of 9-1-1 services across the country.