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GPD Joins Text to 9-1-1 System

The Glendale Police Department (GPD) has joined the new Text to 9-1-1 system in Los Angeles County. Launched this month, the system allows mobile phone users to send text messages to 9-1-1.

Among its many benefits, the new system gives a potentially lifesaving option to residents who are hearing and/or speech-impaired or in situations too dangerous to dial 9-1-1.

The GPD Communications Center and most dispatch centers in Los Angeles County are equipped to receive and respond to mobile phone SMS Text to 9-1-1 messages.

"Call if you can - text if you can't" is the slogan developed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), as the new technology makes its debut in the most populous county in the United States.

Similarly, GPD reminds Glendale residents that Text to 9-1-1 is not meant to replace calling 9-1-1. Residents who are able are asked to call 9-1-1.

Guidelines for the use of Text to 9-1-1 have been issued by the Federal Communications Commission. These guidelines can be found below.

  • If you can, always contact 9-1-1 by making a voice call, "Call if you can - text if you can't."

  • If you are deaf, hard-of-hearing or speech-impaired or disabled, and Text to 9-1-1 is not available, use a TTY or telecommunications relay service, if available.

  • If you text 9-1-1 and text is not available in your area, you will receive a bounce back message advising, “Text is not available please make a voice call to 9-1-1."

  • Location accuracy varies by carrier and should not be relied upon. Be prepared to give your location.

  • Text to 9-1-1 service will not be available if the wireless carrier cannot ascertain a location of the device sending the message.

  • Text to 9-1-1 is not available if you are roaming.

  • A text or data plan is required to place a text to 9-1-1.

  • Photos and videos cannot be sent to 9-1-1. They cannot be received at the 9-1-1 center at this time.

  • Text messages should be sent in plain language and not contain popular abbreviations (SMH, LOL, ICYMI) or emojis, which will not be recognized.

  • Text to 9-1-1 cannot be sent to more than one person. Do not send your emergency text to anyone other than 9-1-1.

  • Texts must be in English only. There currently is no language interpretation for text available. This is still in development.

For more information on Text to 9-1-1, please visit


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