The North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) Regional 911 Program formally launched text to 911 service for Verizon Wireless customers in Collin County (with the exception of Plano, Garland, Richardson, and Wylie). Verizon Wireless customers must be within range of a cell tower in a coverage area in order to send a short message service (SMS) text message to 911.
Text to 911 is intended primarily for use in two emergency scenarios: for an individual who is hearing or speech impaired or in the instance of an emergency such as a home invasion or abduction in which the person must be quiet. Text to 911 should only be used for these types of emergency situations. It should not be used to report non-emergency situations.
It is important to remember that texting is not instantaneous and it will take slightly longer to dispatch emergency services because of the time to enter a text, for the message to go over the network, and for the 911 telecommunicator to read the text and text back.
When using text to 911, it is critical to provide the location information and nature of emergency in the first or initial text message sent. Text abbreviations and slang must be avoided so that the content of the message will be as clear as possible.
See the NCTCOG release for more important information related to text to 911 service.