You have a california cell phone number and area code.you are visiting Washington State.
You call 911 for an emergency.
Is your call directed to 911 operator of your cell phone area code in california or the Washington area code operator at the location you are in while making the call? Might add do not want to call 911 to find out the answer.
Apr 2 2012, 10:01 AM
At one time you would get the CA 911 people. Over the years this may have changed. In all cases the CA 911 people will send you to the correct place for help.
Apr 2 2012, 10:33 AM
Not an expert on this by any means, but in Alabama, my experience has been that you will get the 911 call center for whichever Alabama county the cell tower is located in. Once I called from one county but I was connected to a cell tower in another county. They tied me in directly to the 911 center in the county in which I was actually located and help was on the way in minutes.
Apr 2 2012, 11:45 AM
We were on the road last year and spotted a grass fire that had started beside the road. As this was in Texas during the drought, it needed to be stopped quickly, so we called 911. We were not within our cell number area code location and the call went to the closest town's 911 service.
Actually I also remember a time way back about 8 years ago when we accidentally pocket dialed 911 and were connected to the local 911, and we were several hundred miles from home that time.
Apr 2 2012, 11:55 AM
"The FCC’s Wireless 911 Rules"
"The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has adopted rules aimed at improving the reliability of wireless 911 services and the accuracy of the location information transmitted with a wireless 911 call, as part of our efforts to improve public safety. Such improvements enable emergency response personnel to ensure that Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) receive meaningful, accurate location information from wireless 911 callers in order to dispatch local emergency responders to the correct location and to provide assistance to 911 callers more quickly."
(more)FCC Wireless 911 Services
Apr 3 2012, 06:49 AM
I am a firefighter on the west side of Table Rock Lake, Mo. We are a tourist destination, we see people from everywhere. When a tourist dials 911, it goes to one of two 911 centers, we straddle 2 counties, for dispatch. There is a GPS system in all cell phones that automatically locates the caller and it pops up on the operator's screen. That way the 911 operator can dispatch the appropriate agencies.
Apr 3 2012, 09:11 AM
Perhaps things have changed since we last called 911, but we have had two experience that were different. One call about 5 years ago from a Chicago suburb connected us first with a 911 center that I never did learn where it was. Year before last from a very rural area of TN the call was routed to Florida. Maybe the upgraded GPS capable systems are not everywhere.
This brings up an important point. IMO it is extremely important that people pay attention to where they are. How many of us have stayed in a campground and not even known what county we were in, not to mention the street address or site number? We met some folks, who had a terrible experience with a roadside service because they broke down and did not know what road they were on or the nearest mile marker.
Apr 3 2012, 07:41 PM
Recently had to call 911 to report a theft in progress from a plumbing yard. I have a Michigan phone & number and we are in Arizona. Just dialed 911 and the town I was in answered the call and had the police on scene within 2 minutes, caught the guys too.
Apr 3 2012, 09:18 PM
They can also tell pretty close where you are located by the cell tower.
May 24 2012, 01:03 AM
Interesting discussion, lots of good to know stuff that I hadn't really thought much about.
May 25 2012, 12:02 PM
As a retired (last year) 911 dispatcher, your call goes to the nearest cell tower and PSAP (Public Safety Answering Point). It "may" get rerouted if towers are busy, or you need Emergency service not handled by that PSAP. And with most of the nation now with Phase 2 as a minimum (P3 in a lot of areas, the PSAP can "locate" you within a few hundred feet, if not closer.
May 25 2012, 02:56 PM
What good information! Thanks for contributing your expertise and welcome to the forum.
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