Making 911 Work

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The Grand Forks Emergency Communications Center uses Enhanced 9-1-1 service for every household within Grand Forks County. When a call is placed from a land-line phone, this valuable tool identifies the caller's address, name, and telephone number, even if the caller is unable to provide the information.


 Does a 911 cell phone call give a caller’s exact location?

No. On all Phase II compliant cellphones, the GPS coordinates are relayed to the 911 center along with the telephone number the caller is using. These coordinates have a margin of error that may or may not be minimized throughout a 911 call.

Non-serviced cellphones WILL still call 911, but only relay limited information to the 911 center. If it is a Phase II compliant cellphone, it will relay GPS coordinates with the same margin for error as a serviced cellphone.


When to Call 9-1-1:

Call 911 to report a crime, fire, or serious injury requiring immediate response of law enforcement, an ambulance, or the fire department. Examples are:

  • You witness or are the victim of a crime.
  • You or someone you see needs immediate medical attention.
  • You smell smoke, see fire, or hear fire alarms.
  • You witness or are involved in a serious accident.
  • You or someone else is in a potentially dangerous or life threatening situation.
  • Someone has taken illegal or prescription drugs not prescribed for them.

If you are ever in doubt, it is better to call 911 and have the dispatcher decide if it is an emergency rather than take a chance and not get help quickly to someone who needs it.


What do I say?

When you call 911, the dispatcher will ask important questions, such as:

WHERE - Where is the emergency happening? Inside or Outside?  Where are you?  Where did they go?

WHAT - What is the emergency? What happened? What kind of injuries?

WHO - Who is injured? Who is the suspect? Who are you? Who is involved?

WHEN - When did it happen?

HOW/WHY - How or why did it happen?

WEAPONS - Do you see any weapons? Did you hear them mention any weapons? What type? What did it look like?

                    Where are the weapons now?

CALLER INFO - Who are you? What is your phone number?


**Remain Calm, Speak Clearly, and Remain on the line until

the dispatcher says it’s okay to disconnect.**


Making 911 Work for Everyone

Making 911 Work for Kids

Making 911 Work for Teens

Making 911 Work for Parents