Jessamine set to offer text-to-911 technology

Published 11:34 am Thursday, July 18, 2019

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From staff reports

Jessamine County Judge Executive David K. West and Jessamine County E-911 Director Chris Bowman are pleased to announce that effective immediately, Jessamine County will offer text-to-911 services.
Text-to-911 refers to the ability to send text messages to local 911 call centers during an emergency. In addition to Lexington/Fayette County, Garrard County and Lincoln County, Jessamine County is equipped to receive and handle text-to-911:.
Judge West and other officials urge Jessamine County residents and visitors to a call if you can, text if you must policy, texting to 911 if it is the only option and making a voice call to 911 isn’t possible.
“The text-to-911 service will be useful to all Jessamine County’s residents, including but not limited to the almost 8,000 who are deaf and hard of hearing and/or speech impaired,” West said.
Other examples of situations that may require text-to-911 include: the caller is facing a threatening situation and a voice call could increase the threat; the caller is in a remote location and can only send out a text message; the caller is injured or suffered a medical condition and cannot speak; lines and cell phone towers are overwhelmed and only a text can get through, sporting and concert events, congested areas around shopping centers and large traffic jams.
To text-to-911 enter the numbers 911 in the to field, do not use dashes between the numbers. The first text message to 911 should be brief and contain the location of the emergency and type of help needed followed by pushing the send button.
Users of the text-to-911 service are encouraged to text in simple words, no abbreviations or emojis. Once you have initiated a text-to-911 conversation, you should not delete the message or turn off your phone until the dispatcher tells you it is OK to do so.
“In addition to understanding what text-to-911 can do for us, it’s important to note what it cannot do,” West said.  “No photos or videos can be sent to text-to-911 at this time.”
Text–to-911 cannot support messages in a foreign language. Text-to-911 does not provide call takers with the caller’s location.  For this reason, a person sending a text-to-911 must provide an accurate location as quickly as possible.
Text-to-911 messages pass through multiple public and private networks, so the user’s experience with delivery speed and text response will be similar to non-emergency text messages.
Top tier 911 providers support the text-to-911 service, including AT&T, Verizon, Sprint and T-Mobile.  It is recommended that users dial from their phones primary texting application and not use a purchased or free downloaded app.
For more information visit like Jessamine County, Kentucky on Facebook or call 859-887-5447.

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