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Text-To-911 Coming to Hopkinsville-Christian County September 1, 2020

Hopkinsville-Christian Co. Emergency Communications Center is now integrating texting into its 911 answering system. ECC will be utilizing a platform offered by INdigital called “Texty”. Texty is a platform that allows the Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) to 'add on' non-voice (SMS) to an existing phase II E9-1-1 call. It provides text TO & FROM 9-1-1 services. Indigital is partnered with RapidSOS to provide PSAPs served by Indigital the ability to obtain accurate location and additional data from the RapidSOS NG911 Clearinghouse when available.

Beginning August 10, 2020 the community will begin to see 911 hang-ups from mobile devices responded to by a text from 911 instead of a callback. This will be the beginning phase of the 911 operators utilizing the text-to-911 system on an outbound basis only. This phase will continue until September 1, 2020 when Text-to-911 will become fully functional for inbound text. This will allow the public to start utilizing their mobile devices to text 911 for assistance.

All major mobile providers support this service, including AT&T, Verizon, T-mobile, and Sprint. Other providers who rely on any major telephone carrier’s network should be able to text-to-911. We encourage you to check with your provider.

When should text-to-911 be used?
Call if you can, text if you can’t. The public should only text 911 if it is the only option and making a voice call to 911 isn’t possible. This will allow residents in need of emergency services reach 911 via text when calling is not an option in times of need. This technology directly benefits members of the community who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired. This will allow these members of our community to have a more efficient and effective way to request emergency services. Some other examples include:
• The caller is facing a threatening situation and a voice call could increase the threat.
• The caller is injured or suffered a medical condition and cannot speak.
• The caller is in a remote location and can only send out a text message.
• Phone lines and cell phone towers are overwhelmed and only a text can get through.

How to text 911?
• Enter the numbers “911” in the “To” field (do not enter with dashes like “9-1-1”)
• The first text message to 911 should be brief and contain the location of the emergency and type of help needed
• Push the send button
• Be prepared to answer questions and follow instruction from the 911 call taker
• Text in simple words – do not use abbreviations
• Keep text messages brief and concise
• Once you have initiated a text-to-911 conversation, do not delete the message or turn off the phone until the dispatcher tells you it is okay.
• Photos and videos cannot be sent to 911 at this time.
Can 911 send a text from 911?
• ECC may initiate a text-from-911 in certain circumstances, such as a 911 hang-up call. When a caller dials 911 and hangs up before the call is answered, 911 will attempt a callback. If that call is not unanswered, the 911 center will send a text to callers using a wireless phone to determine if there is an emergency.
• When a caller accidentally dials 911, the caller should always remain on the line to confirm that there is not an emergency.

For more information regarding Text-to-911 in Hopkinsville-Christian Co. please contact ECC Section Supervisor, Stephanie Noel at 270-890-1306 or email snoel@hopkinsvilleky.us.