Text to 9-1-1 service starts in Macon County


MACON COUNTY, Ill. (WCIA) — A big technology upgradeg is coming to the Central Illinois Regional Dispatch Center in Decatur.

A press release says people in Macon County are now able to directly text 9-1-1 from their cell phones. The service is available for the following four major carriers: AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint.

If the service is not available for a particular carrier or experiencing an outage, a bounce-back message will be sent, instructing the recipient to make a voice call instead.

Text to 9-1-1 is a useful resource, the release says, but it isn’t always the best method for every situation. Dispatchers say a voice call is always preferred, but if that’s unsafe or not possible, you can send a text instead.

When texting 9-1-1, you should not use abbreviations, the release says. Officials add the most important information you can provide is the location of the emergency.

Texts sent in Spanish can by translated by an online service.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.