Editorial: Texting to 911 strong alternative for safety

Johnson County has made an important addition to its emergency notification toolkit. Residents now can text 911 dispatchers for help.

In these high-tech times, it’s surprising that emergency texting wasn’t an option far sooner for counties such as ours. Nevertheless, providing another way for residents to seek help during emergency situations is beneficial.

A phone call is still the preferred way for a caller to alert a dispatcher about an emergency because vocal inflections and background sounds can give dispatchers helpful clues to pass on to first responders. Phone calls also are faster, as texts take an additional 20 to 30 seconds to be transmitted.

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