Text to 911 Technology Approved to Improve Maryland Emergency C - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Text to 911 Technology Approved to Improve Maryland Emergency Communication

Posted: Feb 21, 2018 1:47 PM Updated:

ANNAPOLIS, Md.- Gov. Larry Hogan on Wednesday announced the Board of Public Works' approval of a new Text to 911 technology for Maryland, helping to update a 1960s-era emergency systems with life-saving technology.

This new Internet-based infrastructure allows citizens to send a text message to 911. The FCC estimates that more than 70 percent of all 911 calls now come from cellular users.

“This new technology is a vital public safety tool that could potentially help save the lives of citizens who find themselves in an emergency situation,” said Hogan. 

Text to 911 supports 160 characters per message, but no multimedia messaging, such as photos or video. The Maryland Emergency Numbers System Board, under the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, is responsible for overseeing Maryland’s emergency 911 system, including administering the 911 Trust Fund, which will fund the new technology.

"Text to 911 is a major step in modernizing our systems and giving citizens the ability to reach first responders when a call isn’t feasible.” said Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Secretary Stephen Moyer.

The location for the Maryland School for the Deaf, Frederick County, was chosen as the only Maryland county for a 2015 pilot program to launch Text to 911.

The Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, in keeping with nationwide best practices and preferred methods for implementing Text to 911, negotiated the procurement of a master contract for the entire state that will enable Maryland’s remaining 23 counties to secure the technology. These improvements facilitate better government efficiency and delivery of the technology.

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