E-Comm takes more than a million 911 calls

We commend the local project to encourage the community to report crimes to the RCMP.

Editor, The News:

Re:  Call RCMP, no matter what the crime (The News,  April 25).

We commend the local project to encourage the community to report crimes to the RCMP.

As the emergency communications centre for southwest B.C., E-Comm answers more than a million 911 calls a year in Metro Vancouver, including in the communities of Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows.

The 911 tips in the article, Call RCMP, no matter what the crime, are useful and we would like to add some additional tips for callers:

•  911 is for police, fire or medical emergencies when an immediate response is required;

• when immediate action is not required, for example, to report a crime with no suspect, please call the non-emergency number for Ridge Meadows RCMP: 604-463-6251;

•if in doubt, dial 911 and the call-taker may ask you to call back on the non-emergency number when an immediate response or dispatch of the police is not required.

• if you know someone whose first language is not English, please teach them the English word for the language they speak so they can say it to the E-Comm call-taker, who will connect to an interpreter in any of 170 languages in less than a minute, 24 hours a day.

Although 911 call centres in Canada can’t receive text messages at this time, E-Comm is one of four sites testing a pilot project for hearing or speech-impaired callers to text 911.

Jody Robertson,

director of corporate

communications

E-Comm 911