Emergency Dos & Don'ts


  • Dial 911 for life-threatening emergencies and crimes in progress.
  • Be patient as the 911 Operator asks you questions.
  • Know the following information:
    • Address of the emergency
    • Phone number from where you are calling
    • Description of the emergency
    • Your name
    • Your phone number for future calls to obtain more information
  • Briefly describe the type of incident you are reporting.
  • Let the 911 Operator ask you questions - they have been trained to ask questions that will help prioritize the incident, locate it, and quickly send help.
  • Describe your location and the location of the emergency, including city/town, address or location, inside or outside, what floor, room, etc.
  • Describe the person(s) involved in any incident.
  • Describe any vehicles involved in the incident.
  • Listen to the 911 Operator's instructions for assistance if you are in danger yourself.
  • Give the victim reassurance that help is on the way.


  • Program 911 into your auto-dial telephone. Most phones have an emergency feature that will dial 911 by depressing and holding the number 9 key.
  • Dial 911 for non-emergencies; call the Davidson Police Department at  704-892-5131 instead. 
  • Call 911 to "test" your phone.
  • Hang up if you reach a recording and try to call back. Calls are answered in the order they are received.
  • Hang up the telephone if you dialed 911 by mistake. Instead, stay on the line and explain to the dispatcher that you dialed by mistake and that you do not have an emergency.
  • Hang up unless the 911 Operator advises you that it is okay to do so.
  • Call 911 as a prank or joke. Accessing the 911 system for this purpose is against the law.