What should I expect when I call 911?

The first thing you should hear if you call 911 from within the county is "New Hanover County 911, what is the address of your emergency?" After you give the 911 Telecommunicator your location and a brief description of your situation, the following will take place:

  1. The appropriate emergency responders will be immediately dispatched to the location of the incident through the Computer-Aided Dispatch (CAD) system.
  2. The CAD system will prompt the 911 Telecommunicator to ask you a series of questions for important details about the emergency. Although some questions may seem redundant or irrelevant, it is important that you answer them as clearly and accurately as possible.
  3. The 911 Telecommunicator inputs your answers into the CAD system, and another Telecommunicator relays the information to the emergency responders over the radio.
  4. Depending on the situation, the Telecommunicator may give you instructions to assist with the emergency until help arrives. For example, in a serious medical emergency in which CPR is needed, the Telecommunicator will talk the caller through the steps that may help save a person's life.
  5. The 911 Telecommunicator will tell you when it is ok to hang up.

It is important to remain on the line until they tell you it is ok to hang up in case the emergency responders need constant updates about your situation. By continuing to answer questions concerning medical conditions or suspects, you will help provide the emergency responders with information that will prepare them to address the situation as effectively as possible when they arrive on the scene.

Show All Answers

1. What should I expect when I call 911?
2. Why am I being asked so many questions?
3. What information is the most important when calling 911?