Fresno Police Department
911 is Not For Fun
911 is provided for use in emergency situations. If you dial 911 by mistake, DO NOT hang up. Stay on the line and tell the dispatcher that everything is all right. If you hang up, the dispatcher might believe something is wrong and send officers to your home.
Please be responsible – the misuse of 911 could cause a delay in emergency response to others. If you are found to be misusing 911, it could result in your being charged with a misdemeanor and/or imposed with a fine.
If you speak limited English (or none at all), tell the dispatcher that there is an emergency and let him/her know what language you speak. There may be a short delay while a translator is added to the call. DO NOT hang up. If a translator is not available, stay on the phone and explain the emergency and location as best you can. You should learn to speak a few words in English such as fire, police, ambulance, as well as your address… it could save your life.
Tips for Using 911
1. Try to remain calm. Yelling or arguing with the dispatcher will only hinder communications.
2. When calling 911, you may hear a recording asking you to wait. DO NOT hang up and call back. Calls are answered in the order in which they are received. Hanging up and calling back could result in a longer wait time.
3. When the dispatcher answers, briefly state your emergency or problem and give the address where help is needed.
4. Listen to the dispatcher for directions and answer the questions being asked; give short and direct answers.
5. Be patient. The dispatcher may have to ask several questions. This does not mean that officers or emergency services have not been called.
6. Stay on the phone until the dispatcher tells you it is okay to hang up.