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Cell phone customers in Dickenson County have the ability to send short text messages to 9-1-1 in an emergency. At this time, Text-to-911 is available with all major carriers.  Comcast also supports texting from its phone service.

Text-to-911 may be most helpful in these emergency situations:

By individuals who have speech or hearing impairments, or who are having a medical emergency that renders them incapable of speech;  Or in instances when making noise may endanger the caller, such as a home invasion/robbery, or instances of domestic violence or an abduction.


How to Text 9-1-1 in An Emergency

Only use Text-to-911 in an emergency and if you are unable to make a voice call.

Enter the number 911 in the "To" field.
Know your location - Text your exact location, and address
Text what you need – Text what emergency help is needed.
Push the "Send" button.
Be clear - Send a short text message without abbreviations or slang.
Stay calm - Answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 call taker.


Important Considerations

Text-to-911 is an important tool to enhance communications with the public in an emergency,  but it has many limitations. It's important to keep these things in mind:

As with all text messages, text messages to 9-1-1 may take longer to receive, may get out of order, or may not be received at all.

Voice calls are real-time communication and text-to-9-1-1 is not. 9-1-1 call takers will not be able to hear any background noise that could help with assisting during the emergency.

A Text-to 911 message that hits a cellular tower outside of Dickenson County will connect to the emergency communications center where the tower is located. They may not be able to transfer the communications directly to Dickenson County.

Location information will be limited to the cell tower that your cell phone is communicating through. We won't automatically please try to be as descriptive as possible.

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