Calling 9-1-1

What is a PSAP?
A Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP) is a communications center operated as an agency that is responsible for answering 9-1-1 calls and either:

  • A) Dispatching a response or
  • B) Transferring the call to a Secondary PSAP for dispatch.

What to expect when you call 9-1-1:
Stay on the phone with the Dispatcher and be prepared to answer the following questions:

Where are you? (specific street address - with subdivision if applicable / What Hwy are you on with a mile marker / What trail are you on - how do we access it?)

  • What is going on? (Do you need an ambulance/fire dept/law enforcement)
  • What is your phone number?
  • What is your name?
  • Additional details as requested by the Dispatcher

While on the phone with the Dispatcher, EMERGENCY help is being dispatched. Staying on the line, if asked to do so, will NOT delay help from responding units. If it is possible and does not compromise your safety, do not hang up the phone until the 9-1-1 operater says it is okay to do so.

What if I call 9-1-1 by mistake?
Please stay on the line if you call 9-1-1 by accident, and tell the dispatcher that everything is OK. If you do not stay on the line we may have to send a police officer to your home to make sure there is not a problem.

When should I use the non-emergency number?
970-641-8200 (ext. 1) is the ten digit non-emergency number which you can dial 24 hours a day in Gunnison and Hinsdale Counties for non-emergency help. Using the non-emergency number keeps 9-1-1 available for true emergencies.

Some examples of times when you should call 970-641-8200 (ext. 1) are:

  • Your house or car was broken into yesterday
  • Your runaway child has returned home
  • You need to add additional items to the burglary report you made last week
  • Your car was stolen sometime overnight
  • Someone stole your bike while you were at school

Children and 9-1-1:

Teach your child to push 9-1-1 and then the cell phone's call or send button - in an emergency. Explain that this is a very serious thing and that placing the call will bring a police officer, firefighter or EMT to the scene. Explain that emergency for 9-1-1 means threat to body or life - afraid you will be hurt. Don't assume that because YOU know how 9-1-1 works that your child also understands. It's also a mistake to assume that a child who knows how to dial 9-1-1 from a landline phone will know how to do the same thing on a cell phone, which requires the extra call or send button state. If you child needs practice, have them do it on a cell phone that is TURNED OFF!