Calling 911 from a cell phone versus a landline

Richard Pass, RN, Registered Nurse & CPR Expert, shares advice on whether it is best to call 911 from a landline or from your cell phone in an emergency
Calling 911 From A Cell Phone Vs Calling From A Landline
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Calling 911 from a cell phone versus a landline

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This question of whether to use a cell phone or a landline to make your 9-1-1 call on is a very important one. It may vary depending on your jurisdiction and your location. For example, in California we have an issue with cell phone calls and delays. They tend to be delayed because the calls are routed through the highway patrol and the state system, whereas landline calls go directly to a 9-1-1 center. In addition, those landline calls allow the dispatcher to see who the caller is, where the address you're calling from is, and have a much closer relationship, and in particular they answer the phone more quickly. The recommendation from several police officers has been that if you are needing to use your cell phone because that's all you have and perhaps you're away from the home, is to predial into your phone the phone number for your local police precinct. So if you can't get through and there are delays that you call that local police precinct who can then patch you through.

Richard Pass, RN, Registered Nurse & CPR Expert, shares advice on whether it is best to call 911 from a landline or from your cell phone in an emergency

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Richard Pass, RN

Registered Nurse & CPR Expert

Richard Pass, RN, BS, was born in Los Angeles. He studied nursing in Portland, Oregon and has since practiced nursing for 35 years, including ICU, Emergency, and Cardiology nursing. Richard started his CPR & Family Safety educational company, Save a Little Life, Inc., in 1999. With Save a Little Life, Inc., Richard presents house calls and classes all over the Los Angeles area. He teaches medical-surgical nursing at California State University, and is married with two grown children and one grandchild.

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