Riley County dispatchers upgrade to “Text to 911” system


MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNT) – People in the Little Apple can now text 911 during an emergency. The Riley County Police Department upgraded to a “Text to 911” system earlier this month.

“Just like any other 911 call, we handle it with the same priority,” said Communications Center Manager Tyler Siefkes. “Hopefully it’s not going to add too much more load to our dispatchers but it’s a nice capability to have.”

Siefkes says this new texting option is part of a suite of improvements RCPD will be implementing in the next several months. He still suggests people call 911 if they can but he says this can be a safer option in some circumstances.

“People in an emergency situations that cannot speak or it might put them in more danger if they do speak, this is a great way for them to still reach us in an emergency situation,” said Siefkes.

In an emergency, text 911 and send the dispatcher your location. The dispatcher will then ask the nature of your emergency and go through the normal questions.

There are currently five counties in Kansas that don’t offer the ability to text 911: Atchinson, Brown, Crawford, Doniphan, Geary, Linn, Marhsall and Osage. Check out the coverage map below.

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