Residents and visitors in Howard County and the state of Maryland can now text 911 in an emergency. Review the below Q&A for more information on the program.

Q: What is text-to-911?
A: Text-to-911 is the ability to send a text message from your mobile phone to 911 in the event you are unable to place a phone call.

1. For individuals who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, or have a speech disability
2. For someone who is in a situation where it is unsafe to place a voice call to 911
3. For an individual who is experiencing a medical emergency and may be unable to speak

You should only text 911 in an emergency. Prank-texters can be identified and prosecuted according to local laws and regulations.

Q: What are the challenges with text-to-911 service?
A: As with all text messages, texts to 911 may take longer to receive and respond than a voice call. Texts also do not provide the location of the texter,