Columbus – Text to 911 has been implemented in Platte County. The Columbus Police Department is currently the 911 center for Platte County.
The text to 911 system is designed primarily for deaf, hard of hearing, and speech impaired citizens. However, if making a voice call would directly endanger the person calling 911 then texting would be an option. It is important to note that calling 911 is still the fastest and most efficient way to request emergency assistance.
Text to 911 calls will be handled similar to wireless 911 and TTY911 calls. The calls will be received through the 911 system. Because of the lack of accurate and reliable location information, the priority will be to determine the caller’s exact location/address. Without the location information, emergency response cannot be sent.
If it is determined that the caller is not within Platte County, the call cannot be transferred to the correct jurisdiction. The individual will then be instructed to call 911 so they can be transferred to the correct 911 center.
When the dispatcher disconnects the call, an automatic message will be sent advising the caller they have been disconnected. The caller should call 911 by voice or begin a new text message if they require additional assistance.
This service is not currently supported by all cell phone carriers or other 911 centers in the region. If somebody attempts a text and it is not supported, they will receive a message saying they must make a voice call to 911 or that text to 911 is not supported in that area. The cell phone providers that have been tested to work in Platte County include AT&T, Sprint, US Cellular, and Verizon. The current texting capabilities are English only.
Questions regarding text to 911 should be directed to Todd Thalken at the Columbus Police Department at (402) 564-3201 or email at email@example.com.