Using 911


Here in St Mary Parish, 911 is available from traditional wire line phones, cell phones, and all payphones.  Dial 911 in an emergency--when police, fire, or medical services are needed right away in order to save a life, report a fire or stop a crime.

How to use 911

  • Dial the numbers 911 from a safe place.
  • Wait for a calltaker to answer
  • State the emergency.
  • The calltaker will confirm your name, address and phone number.
  • Remain calm, speak clearly and follow any instructions.
  • Stay on the line until the calltaker says to hang up.

From a traditional wire line phone, Enhanced 911 automatically displays the caller's address and telephone number at the emergency call center. This allows call takers to quickly send emergency services, avoiding delays that could endanger a person's life or property.

Location of cellular phone callers is provided in the form of latitude and longitude coordinates. The availability of this service varies by carrier and phone type. Check to see if your carrier has completed Phase II. Then call your service provider to see if the phone you are using is Phase II compliant.

Using TTY

St. Mary 911 public safety telecommunicators are trained to answer TTY calls as part of the initial Enhanced 911 training. When you call 911 from a TTY, you are not required to tap the TTY spacebar, but sometimes tapping the spacebar helps telecommunicators know it is a TTY call and they can help you faster.

Tips for Using a TTY to Request Emergency Services:

1. Dial 911.
2. Tap the TTY spacebar key for 911 fast answer.
3. Wait for 911 to answer.
4. Type what help is needed: police, fire, medical.
5. Type your name and the address where help is needed.
6. Answer all questions.
7. Hang up ONLY when told.

Wireless 911

911 is the emergency number to call for wireless customers.

Here are some tips to keep in mind when calling 911 from a cell phone:

  • Know your location. Cell phones cannot give your exact location. Have your address ready, or use landmarks, mile markers or road signs to describe where you are.

  • Cell phones do not always direct you to the proper agency. If this happens, remain patient and wait for the call taker to transfer you.

  • Many cell phones have an emergency 911 feature on them. Please be aware of this and use it only for emergencies.

  • Cell phones have been known to dial 911 while in a pocket book or purse. PLEASE lock your keypad to prevent accidental dialing.

  • Know your phone. Even though many of St Mary Parish's cellular providers have activated 911 location technologies, you need to call your carrier and find out if your phone can take advantage of this service.

VoIP Service

Voice over Internet Protocol telephone service, or VoIP, may look and appear to work like a phone, but it connects to the Internet, not a telephone line.

Here are several critical factors to consider regarding the impact of this technology on your emergency call to 911:

  • Does your VoIP phone provide 911 access?

    • Check your service provider's website for emergency calling features. Find out if it automatically displays your address at the 911 center if you should need to call.

    • If it is silent on the issue, it is likely that 911 is NOT provided.

  • When calling for emergency help, give your location and call back number. Many VoIP services do not provide this information.

  • Call back if you get disconnected.

  • If the power is out, your VoIP service may also be out.

  • If you travel with your VoIP adapter, your phone may not work for making 911 calls. Call from another phone.




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