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Franklin County Rolls Out 911 Texting Option

person holding a smartphone
Jan Vašek

Franklin County residents with emergencies now have the option to text 911 instead of placing a call.

The county on Wednesday joins about a dozen other counties statewide allowing the emergency texts.

Officials say a call is still preferable but texting is an important option if someone is hiding during an emergency and it would be dangerous to be heard on the phone. A press release includes the phrase, “Call if you can, text if you can’t.”

The $2.5 million program is funded by fees paid by device users on their monthly bills.

The system can only handle texts and needs a sufficient cellphone signal. Photos, videos and emojis cannot be transmitted.