The four largest wireless telephone companies (AT&T, Verizon, Sprint, and T-Mobile) recently agreed to make texting to 911 available in areas where the local 911 center is prepared to receive the texts. Currently text to 911 is only available in limited areas of the United States. The FCC hopes to make this service uniformly available via all text providers by the end of this year.
The text to 911 service isn’t meant to replace regular 911 calls. But it is a useful option for people who are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability. It’s also a safe option when a voice call to 911 might otherwise be dangerous or impossible (such as when an intruder is in your home).
As mentioned previously, text to 911 is currently only available in certain areas. The four major wireless companies will roll out the service to other areas during the year. To find out if text to 911 is available in your area, call your wireless phone company about text-to-911 availability.
If text to 911 is available in your area, keep in mind that unlike phone calls, the call taker will not receive automatically location information when you text 911 from a wireless phone. For this reason, it is important to provide an accurate address or location when you text.
More info: What You Need to Know About Text-to-911