Teach Your Children About 911
In an emergency, would your children know how to call for help? The Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Service offers the following tips to help children as young as three learn all about 911:
- Always refer to the number as "nine-one-one" not "nine-eleven." In an emergency your child may be confused when they can't find the "eleven" button on your telephone.
- Make sure your child knows his or her home address so he can tell the operator.
- Children should be told that the operator is their friend and may ask them questions such as where they live, what kind of emergency they have and who needs help.
- Your children should know that 9-1-1 is for emergencies only. Give them examples of what constitutes and emergency and explain to them that 9-1-1 is not a toy or game but should be called if the person thinks they need the help of the fire department or the police department.
- Remind your child that in most cases, help will have already been dispatched before the call is complete and not to be concerned that their answers are too long or the length of time you are on the phone is delaying the arrival of assistance.
- All 9-1-1 operators are trained to obtain as much information as possible from you while simultaneously arranging for emergency equipment to be sent to your emergency. The operator may give you instructions to assist the sick or injured person prior to the arrival of emergency services.
- When reporting a fire, remind your children to "Get Out and Stay Out" and ALWAYS call 9-1-1 from a safe location such as a neighbor's house.