Text to 911 Pinal County Maricopa
Text-to-911 is now available to Maricopa residents.

Maricopa residents now have another way to request emergency services – text to 911. The service, which went into effect this week, allows residents to send a text message to 911 if voice calling is unavailable or not an option for the caller. The service was made available in Pinal County in October.

The city emphasized in a press release that while text-to-911 is now an option, “voice calls to 911 are much more expedient and provide much more information to 911 call centers.”

According to the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office, the reasons for using text to 911 includes when an individual is deaf, hearing impaired or has a speech disability; in situations where it is not safe to place a voice call to 911; and during a medical emergency that renders the person incapable of speaking.

According to Councilmember Amber Liermann, the new service is a major step forward for the city and its ability to provide emergency services.

“We are very excited that Maricopa has text-to-911 now,” she said at Tuesday’s city council meeting. “Not only is text-to-911 beneficial for the hearing-impaired and speech-impaired but also could save lives for those in emergency situations where they cannot call 911 or talk on the phone. I want to thank everyone who was involved in bringing this life-saving service to Maricopa.”

The city provided the following guidelines for using text-to-911:

  • Enter the numbers ‘911’ in the ‘To’ field on your mobile device.
  • ALWAYS provide your location and the nature of your emergency in your original text message.
  • ‘Send’ your message.
  • Be prepared to answer questions and follow any instructions provided to you by the 911 operator.
  • Reply as quickly as possible.
  • Always remember to use simple words. Do not use abbreviations!

The city also provided several caveats to the new service including:

  • Voice calls are ALWAYS the best option for contacting 911.
  • Texting is not available from deactivated cell phones, but you can still call 911 from them.
  • A text-to-911 message may take longer to be received, may be delivered out of order, or not received at all.
  • Text-to-911 is not available if your cellular device is in “roaming” status.
  • You will receive a “bounce back” message when texting is not available.
  • Photos and videos cannot be sent to 911.
  • Do not text and drive!