Know Your location

In order to get the appropriate emergency services to you as quickly as possible, it is important that you 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 cellphone or an Internet/VoIP phone (see below).
    • Cellphones provide only general location information; Internet phones provide no location information at all.
  • You should know what city you are in, the building or home addresses, cross streets and any other information that will help emergency personnel find you.
  • Learn your compass directions (north, south, east, west).

Important information from Search & Rescue: Never wait to call 9-1-1 if you are lost outdoors. Even though you may not feel an urgent threat to your health or safety, it is best to make the call immediately rather than trying to find your way back. Once you’ve made this call, follow the instructions of the 9-1-1 call-taker and/or Search & Rescue official. You may be instructed to conserve your cellphone’s battery power by not making any other calls or to establish set times for further communication with emergency responders.

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP)

VoIP calls to 9-1-1 do not go directly to 9-1-1 centres. If you dial 9-1-1 from a VoIP phone, your call will go to a third-party call centre and an operator will re-direct your call to the appropriate 9-1-1 centre.

VoIP phones do not provide location information. It is crucial that your location information is up to date with your VoIP service provider, as the call-taker may assume that you are at the last registered address if you are not able to speak during a 9-1-1 call.