Call if you can, text only if you can’t


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Text to 911 service is available in Franklin and Delaware Counties as of January 23. However, public safety officials advise to only do so as a last resort. A text to 911 call doesn’t provide the same location information to emergency dispatchers as a phone call. In addition, texts can be delayed. A text to 911 also puts the full burden of providing all pertinent information about an emergency on the texter, without the luxury of verbal prompts from the emergency dispatcher. These and other factors could delay your call. However, there are many situations where a text to 911 call may be preferable, such as if the caller has a hearing or speech disability or cannot speak due to a medical condition. Text to 911 would also be useful if you are in a threatening situation that could be exacerbated by a voice call. If the wireless signal is poor, text to 911 may allow your call to be delivered more reliably.