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An iPhone service that can save your life without speaking

Posted at 5:15 PM, Nov 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-30 19:15:49-05

A new emergency phone service that can save a persons life without the caller saying a word.  

The Teletype Writer Technology (TTY) allows a caller to write to 9-1-1 dispatchers and state your emergency.

Public Safety Dispatcher, Jaime Contreras says, the service is mostly for the hearing and speech impaired but it can also be used in situations where people can't use their voice - such as, active shooter and abduction scenarios. 
"TTY uses the phone line to communicate text using tones to communicate via text but it's not text messaging." 

Here's how it works, it only works for iPhone users. In order to use the service you will need to have the iOS 10 update. 

To enable TTY follow these instructions: 

  • Settings 
  • General 
  • Accessibility 
  • TTY and click 'enable' 


Dispatchers say, callers will still have to dial 9-1-1 and once you do you will be prompted to call 911 or TTY 911. Contreras says, callers should press "TTY 911."

After pressing the 'TTY 911' option, Contreras says, "if we do not hear a voice on the other side we prompt 911 what's your emergency and if we don't get an answer we enable the TTY to just rule out and possibilities if that's the issue or not."



As soon as you get a text - tell the dispatcher what the emergency is and your address. 

Once the service is enabled into your iPhone - test it by dialing 711

Dispatchers are asking to NOT dial 9-1-1 to test your service. 

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