Calling 9-1-1
Emergency Calls
9-1-1 is the emergency number to use when you need prompt, urgent help from firefighters, paramedics or law enforcement.

Call 9-1-1 to report:
•A fire
•A serious injury or medical condition
•A crime in progress or a serious crime has just occurred
•An event happens that poses or indicates an immediate threat to people or property (such as screaming or gunshots)
•A suspicious package
•The following types of threats: bomb, radiological, biological and chemical

When you call 9-1-1:
Calmly and clearly answer the dispatcher’s questions. You may be asked:

◦What is the emergency?
◦Who needs help?
◦Where are you? This is especially important if you are calling from a cell phone.
◦When did it happen?
◦What is your name and phone number?
◦Who is with you?

•Stay on the line until the 9-1-1 dispatcher says it is okay to hang up.

•Do not hang up if you dial 9-1-1 by accident. Tell the dispatcher your call was in error and that there is no emergency; otherwise, an officer may be sent to see if everything is okay.

When you’re on a cell phone:
Calls from a cell phone in Santa Barbara County may be routed to the California Highway Patrol, and may not display some information for the 9-1-1 call taker the way calls from a land line do. That can result in a response delay.