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Texting emergencies into Alpena 9-1-1

Submitted by Phil Heimerl on November 13, 2017 – 12:56 amNo Comment
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The Alpena County central dispatch center now accepts emergency text messages from wireless devices to 9-1-1.

Effective immediately, county residents who are unable to use a telephone to call 911 during an emergency can text a message into the center.

“We are pleased that we are able to launch this service in Alpena County,” said Ray Wekwert, interim director of 911 services.  “Calling and speaking with a dispatcher is still the best way of reaching emergency services but that is not always an option.”

Texting to 911 will benefit anyone who is unable to speak during an emergency, such as a home invasion or an abusive partner.  It is also intended to help individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability.  It can also be a benefit in areas where wireless service is limited.

Wekwert says residents should “…call when you can and text when you can’t.”

Citizens who text 911 should send brief messages without using abbreviations or slang; be prepared to communicate your exact location and the emergency help that is needed; and stay with your wireless device and be prepared to answer questions and follow instructions from the 911 dispatcher.

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