Deaf, Hard-of-Hearing and Speech Impaired (DHHSI) Community

Text with 9-1-1

Text with 9-1-1 is a special text-messaging service for pre-registered Deaf, Deaf-Blind, Hard-of-Hearing and Speech Impaired (DHHSI) persons to access 9-1-1 services.

Click here to learn more about texting with 9-1-1 in Metro Vancouver and other areas. A Text with 9-1-1 infographic was created to help others learn about how this new service works; scroll to the bottom of this page to view the Text with 9-1-1 infographic or click here.

Text with 9-1-1 works differently than regular texting and there are very important things DHHSI persons need to know in order to use this special text service:

  • Ask your cellphone company (e.g. TELUS, Bell, Rogers) to make sure your cellphone can make voice calls and send/receive text messages. This is important.
  • Register your cellphone with your cellphone company (e.g. TELUS, Bell, Rogers). Click on this link to register:
  • You must call from one of the communities listed here to use Text with 9-1-1 (E-Comm service area)
  • In an emergency, you must call 9-1-1 first to connect with a 9-1-1 operator.
  • Do not start texting until you get a text from the 9-1-1 operator.
  • A 9-1-1 operator will send you a text as soon as they can. This may take between 45-60 seconds due to the technology. If you do not get a text after a few minutes, hang up and try again or seek help from someone else (e.g. ask someone else to call 9-1-1 for you).
  • Text with 9-1-1 is available in English. A French interpreter can be contacted by the 9-1-1 operator if needed.

Members of the DHHSI community should visit to register their cellphones with their cellphone company and to learn more about how the system works.

NOTE: Calls to 9-1-1 via TTY (telephone typewriter) units will continue to be accepted. For more information on TTY please click this link:

Locations where Text with 9-1-1 is available (*E-Comm service area):



Bowen Island







Halfmoon Bay

Langley (City & Township)

Lions Bay

Maple Ridge

New Westminster

North Vancouver (District & City)


Pender Harbour

Pitt Meadows

Port Coquitlam

Port Moody


Roberts Creek





West Howe Sound

West Vancouver

White Rock


Furry Creek, Britannia, Porteau, Upper Squamish, Upper Cheakamus, Ring Creek, Pinecrest/Black Tusk Village

Howe Sound Communities of Ocean Point, Strachan Point, Montizambert Wynd, Bowyer Island and
Passage Island

Indian Arm/Pitt Lake Communities (Boulder Island, Carraholly Point, Northern Portion of Indian Arm and West side of Pitt Lake)

Pemberton Meadows, Mt. Currie, D’Arcy Corridor, Whistler-Pemberton Corridor

University of BC, University Endowment Lands, Barnston Island

If a caller uses TTY, the caller should:

  • Stay calm and call 9-1-1 from their TTY device
  • Give the 9-1-1 operator a moment to respond (this is important). The 9-1-1 operator should answer you by typing "911, Police, Ambulance or Fire GA" (for "Go Ahead".)
  • Tell the 9-1-1 operator what you need by typing: "police, fire department, or ambulance." Type your name, phone number and confirm your address.
  • Stay on the telephone/TTY if it is safe to do so. Answer the 9-1-1 call-taker's questions.

If a DHHSI caller doesn't have a TTY unit or pre-registered cellphone for Text with 9-1-1, the caller should dial 9-1-1 from a landline telephone and not hang up. The line will remain open. If you are calling from your home phone or a business telephone (a phone that plugs directly into a telephone outlet in the wall) the caller's address is displayed on the 9-1-1 operator's screen. This will allow the 9-1-1 operator to send police. For more information on TTY visit:

Click on the Text with 9-1-1 infographic below to learn more about Text with 9-1-1.

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