Telecommunicator Questions

What Are the Kinds of Questions the Telecommunicator Will Ask?
When you call 911, the Telecommunicator who answers will ask you several questions. It is important that you listen carefully, and answer each question as best as you can. Some people think that these questions might make it take longer for help to arrive; this is incorrect. Help can be dispatched by one Telecommunicator while another gathers important information about the situation for responders; in fact, answering the Telecommunicator’s questions can actually shorten the length of time before help arrives by ensuring that officers understand the situation properly.

Also, by providing a complete description of the people and vehicles that may be involved, officers will know before they arrive who, or what they are looking for, and may be able to locate an emergency or suspect more quickly than if they need to meet with you in person to obtain the information.

You should expect the Telecommunicator to ask you about:
  • The exact address or location of the incident
  • The type of situation you are reporting
  • Your name
  • The location from which you are calling
  • The telephone number from which you are calling
  • Details about the event
  • Weapons: If used, what type, and how many?
  • Description of people and vehicles involved in the incident
  • Direction of travel of people or vehicles who left the scene
  • Other information that may be relevant or necessary