Why does 911 ask me so many questions?

We receive hundreds of calls a day. For each and every call, we need to find out certain information to get you the appropriate response as quickly as possible, and to ensure the safety of the responders.
We need to know:
  • what is going on?
  • where is the incident taking place?
  • what is the number you are calling from?
Next, we may ask about weapons, suspects, vehicle and their description, directions of travel, etc.
If it is a medical call, 911 dispatchers are trained to ask several questions related to the medical problem and provide pre-arrival instructions following our Emergency Medical Dispatch Criteria. Most often help is dispatched within 15-30 seconds after the call is received. We pass on the appropriate information we gather to the responders already en-route. This helps them better prepare for the call at hand.
Please be patient and answer the questions the dispatcher asks you in the order they ask you. The dispatchers collectively have years of experience at their disposal. Home address and phone number may be asked in case further contact with you is needed.