text size:

Safety Tips

Preventing crime and maintaining safe communities is everyone's responsibility. By practising the following personal and property safety tips, you can help reduce the incidents of crime and keep your community safe.



Do you require Police Fire or Ambulance?
Please answer this question and be prepared to confirm your location, your name, your telephone number and the nature of your emergency.

Durham Region 911 processes over four hundred calls daily. If you receive a recorded message asking you to “stay on the line”, do not hang up. The number of incoming 911 calls may determine the speed of their response.

Not sure when to call 911? View our section When Seconds Count - Calling 911 for details.

911 has an Automatic Location Identification System and Automatic Number Identification System, which identifies the address and telephone number, however, confirmation will be sought. If a caller is unable to communicate or respond, the police will be dispatched to the location immediately.

If 911 is called in error, the caller should not hang up. If the line is disconnected, the Call-Taker will ring back the telephone number, as the line is seized. This does not allow for disconnection. The line will remain connected to the Call-Taker while emergency services respond. Police, Fire and EMS will be dispatched as a precaution.

Should Fire or Ambulance be requested, the Call-taker will transfer the caller directly to the requested agency for assistance and dispatching.

If the caller does not speak English, the Call-taker will immediately link the telephone call to a telephone translation service, which can handle over 150 languages, within seconds.
TTY: 905-436-6642

911 Calls From Cellphones
When calling 9-1-1 from a cellphone, only limited information is available to the Emergency call takers.

When calling 911 from a cellular phone, please:
- Give your location,
- Give your cellular telephone number, (including area code)
- Advise the situation. At this point you may be transferred to EMS, OPP or fire if required.
- Await instructions from the call taker
- Stay on the line until advised by the call taker.

911 Calls From VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) Phones
If you purchase your telephone service from your internet provider, 911 will have no information on your location or phone number.

When calling 911 from a VoIP phone, please:
- Give your location. Include address and town or city as this will enable the call taker to either handle the information, or transfer you to the proper 911 centre,
- Give your telephone number (including area code)
- Advise what the situation is. At this point you may be transferred to ambulance or fire if required.
- Await instructions from the call taker,
- Stay on the line until advised by the call taker.
- Always keep your VoIP/Internet provider updated with your correct/current address.

  1. Do not program 911 into the memory of your home, business or wireless device. This is one of the largest causes for false 911 calls.
  2. Make sure your house number can be seen from the road and it can be seen at night.
  3. If your house number is on your mailbox, make sure it is obvious which mailbox represents which house.
  4. Stay calm, answer all questions and await emergency response.
  5. Always lock your cellphone key pad before placing your cell in your purse or pocket.
  6. If you or your child dial 911 in error, please don't hang up. Stay on the line to verify with the Call-taker you don't need police, fire or EMS.