911 Tips

911 is for police, fire or medical emergencies when lives are in danger, immediate action is required or there is a crime in progress.  911 call-takers cannot provide information on the weather, power outages, municipal services, seasonal time change, or to call a tow truck or taxi.  Don’t call 911 and ask for the ‘non-emergency’ phone number.  Those numbers are located in the front pages of your phone book.  You can also call directory assistance and retrieve any number.

Please use 911 responsibly – it is not an information line.

Stay on the Line:

When a Medicine Hat 911 call-taker answers, they will ask you if you need Fire, Police, or Ambulance.  The Call-taker will also confirm which town or city you are calling for.  Once you indicate which service you need, your call will be immediately shunted.

Stay on the line and follow instructions.  Your 911 call-taker will stay on the line with you to make sure your call is answered by the agency you need.

Know your Location:

  • Know your location at all times and communicate it when you are asked.
  • Location is particularly important if you are calling from a cell phone or an internet phone (VoIP)
  • You should know what city you are in, building or home addresses, cross streets, and any other information that will help emergency personnel find you.

Be Prepared to Answer Questions:

Our call-takers are trained to ask specific questions in a priority sequence.  Please answer their questions as best you can.  Their persistence is based on a need to provide accurate and specific information to the attending emergency responders

  • Listen carefully, speak clearly and try to remain calm

Please understand that while call-takers are asking you questions, they are also alerting and dispatching the appropriate emergency personnel to help you at the same time.

If you call 911 Accidentally:

If you dial 911 accidentally, stay on the line and tell us.  If you hang up, we don’t know if you are OK, and will call back or send Police to check on you.

  • Don’t program 911 into your telephone – speed dials can lead to accidental 911 calls
  • Keep you cell phone in a safe position when not in use to prevent accidental calls
  • Please do not test 911 to see if it’s working

Help Others to Know About 911:

  • Teach children to use 911 properly, and remind them it is not a toy.  Always keep cordless phones fully charged and in the same place in the home.  Keep your address information near the phone and show your children and caregivers where it is.  Never give old cell phones to children to use as toys – many decommissioned phones can still dial 911.
  • Deaf and hearing/speech impaired callers can dial 911 through TTY (telephone typewriter) units.