Skip to main content

From the security desk…

Howdy neighbors! We have made it to the end of summer and the start of a new school year. The weather will get cooler, the leaves will change color (a little) and college football starts! The latter is my favorite.

I wanted to write a general article about ‘when to call 911.’ Most of you already know but there may be a few that don’t, so here are a few things to think about. So, what are the reasons we should call 911?

  • A fire
  • A crime, especially if in progress
  • A car crash, especially if someone is injured
  • A medical emergency, especially with symptoms that require immediate attention

Reminder: If you are not sure whether the situation is a true emergency, officials recommend calling 911 and letting the call-taker determine whether you need emergency help.

Once you have called 911 you will need to give some information to the call-taker, which may include:

  • The location of the emergency, including the street address. Now, if you are in an unfamiliar place and don’t know the exact location, and you have a cell phone, you can look at the map and give cross streets. You could also try getting an exact address by pinning your location on the map. If you have people staying in your home unfamiliar with the area (babysitter, nanny, friends from out of town) if might be worth posting the address in a central location.
  • The phone number you are calling from
  • The nature of the emergency
  • Details about the emergency, such as physical description of a person who may have committed a crime, a description of any fire that may be burning, or a description of injuries or symptoms being experienced by a person having a medical emergency.

Remember, the call-taker’s questions are important to get the right kind of help to you quickly. Be prepared when answering questions or giving information, and try to remain calm. Do not hang up until the call-taker instructs you to. Following these suggestions can save time.

If you dial 911 by mistake do not hang up. This could make 911 officials think an emergency exists and possibly send responders to your location. Simply, explain what happened.

So, what’s the 411 with some other numbers we also commonly hear about or used…

411

is directory assistance which is usually available to everyone through their wireless service. You can call from your mobile phone and ask an operator for numbers, directions or other general information. There may be a fee assessed for each call.

311

This is a non-emergency call system allowing people to report problems (i.e. graffiti, a fallen tree in the street, an abandoned car on the street) in the neighborhood and get a response. They enable city governments to identify patterns and address issues proactively.

211

This is a number assigned by the FCC for purposes of providing quick and easy access to information about health and human services.

Information for this article was obtained from 911.gov

Well, that is enough from me. I hope everyone enjoys the Fall season and remember…Be observant, vigilant and neighborly!

Submitted by: Joseph Schill