Text-to-9-1-1 is now available throughout South Dakota.
Wireless cell phone customers in South Dakota can text to 9-1-1 when they can’t call in an emergency. The text, like a phone call, will be routed to a local 9-1-1 dispatch center.
“Text-to-9-1-1 should only be used in an emergency when you can’t call 9-1-1,” said Craig Price, cabinet secretary for the South Dakota Department of Public Safety. “The Text-to-9-1-1 option would be good to use if speaking out loud would put the caller in danger or if the caller is deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech impaired.”
People who are unable to call 9-1-1, should remember these steps about Text to 9-1-1:
• Don’t text and drive.
• In the first text message, send the location and type of emergency.
• Text in simple words; keep the text message short without the use of abbreviations or slang.
• Be prepared to answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 call taker.
• Voice calls to 9-1-1 are still the best and fastest way to contact 9-1-1.
• Call 9-1-1 if you can, text if you can’t.
For more information on the Text to 9-1-1 program in South Dakota, visit text911sd.com.