Why do you ask so many questions when I call?

As we mentioned before, the questions are not slowing down the process in any way. Once we have your location and other vital info, help is already on the way. Officer safety issues, important medical information, and other scene size-up information are gathered during this interrogation process.

We are not the ones who are responding, and the people we are dispatching need to know what kind of situation they are getting into. It's our job to paint a picture of the scene as best as we can, and the only information we can pass along to these responders is what the caller, you, tells us!

If you have witnessed a crime, we will ask for other pertinent information, which we will then pass along to police via radio. For instance, descriptions of the person committing the crime (head-to-toe), if there is a vehicle involved (color, year, make/model, body style, license plate number, if there's any damage, direction of travel, etc). This helps the responding officers to find who they're looking for.

We will also ask on any potential police call if there are any weapons or injuries. This allows us to determine if EMS needs to be dispatched, and if it is safe for officers and/or EMS personnel to respond.

Show All Answers

1. When should I call 911?
2. What can I do to ensure the fastest possible response?
3. I accidentally dialed 911. What should I do?
4. Why do you ask so many questions when I call?
5. What if I don't have an emergency, but need to reach a police officer, fire department, or ambulance service?
6. Are there times when it's not appropriate to call 911?
7. Don't my address and phone number show up on your caller ID? Why do you have to ask? Doesn't my cell phone tell you my exact location when I call?
8. Why does it take help so long to get here?
9. Is my name going to wind up in the newspaper if I report a crime?
10. Is it true that deactivated cell phones can call 911?
11. Who is answering the phone when I call 911?
12. I have an emergency involving one of my pets. Can you help me?
13. My cat is stuck in a tree! Can you get it down?
14. I want to work as a 911 dispatcher. What special skills and training do I need? Do you have any openings?