Last night, as I reflected on the day, I was reminded that six years ago – June 9, 2009, Black Hawk County, Iowa received the first successful test of a text-to-9-1-1 message in the country, supported by Intrado’s initial TXT29-1-1® service. I wanted to stop for a moment to recognize this important anniversary.At the time, the simple text of “help man with gun in house” was considered a breakthrough for the speech and hearing-impaired community. Today, a text-to-9-1-1 message is the best alternative to a voice 9-1-1 call in emergency situations.
Over 500 PSAPS enabled with Text Capabilities
Intrado has helped enable over 500 PSAPs with text capabilities, and wireless carriers provide text-to-9-1-1 support where available.
There are still challenges ahead, including improving funding to upgrade current 9-1-1 systems and increasing the public’s awareness about this capability in their jurisdictions.
Still, milestones like these remind me what a privilege it is to be part of a community that works collaboratively to leverage every available technology in the interest of public safety.
Remember, calling 9-1-1 is always best. Call if you can, text if you can’t.