For a multitude of reasons, you could be faced with a situation one day where you need to call 9-1-1, but you are not able to talk to the dispatcher. Maybe there is a break-in at your home and you don't want to alert the intruder that you are calling for help, or even let them become aware that you are in the house. Maybe you have sustained an injury that makes it difficult for impossible for you to speak. Maybe the microphone on your phone is broken.

Your phone's keypad is all you need...


Whatever the reason, did you know that you can call 9-1-1 and express your situation to the dispatcher by using only the keypad of your phone? You certainly can.


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It's a statewide service available to everyone here in Massachusetts...

The Berkshire County Sheriff's Office via a post on its Facebook page last week sent out an informational reminder to residents about the service that is up and running for you to use if you are faced with a situation where you cannot speak aloud:


As part of our community outreach and community education, our E911 dispatchers want to ensure that you are aware of a statewide service that is available via 911. If you're unable to communicate your emergency for any reason, you can indicate your need for help by pressing digits on your telephone's keypad.


Here is a helpful visual posted on the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office Facebook Page:

Berkshire County Sheriff's Department Facebook
Berkshire County Sheriff's Department Facebook


A quick review of the steps:

When you call 9-1-1 and you cannot speak for whatever reason, press:

* 1 if you need police 

* 2 if you need fire services 

* 3 if you need an ambulance 

If you're asked a question during the call, you can press: 

* 4 to respond yes 

* 5 to respond no 


Another important piece of this is that if you can't call for some reason, you can text instead. As the graphic (above) says: "Call if you can, text if you can't."


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