AT&T and the state of Tennessee are starting a trial of a text-to-911 service in order to see how well emergency call centers can receive and handle emergency text messages.
The benefits of being able to text 911 for help are immense. In the situation of a car accident that could leave the driver unable to speak, being able to quickly text the word ‘help’ to 911 could mean the difference between life or death. It can also prove to save someone’s life in the situation that they are unable to speak, or prefer not to speak, and can get assistance simply by texting what is going on in their particular situation.
The text-to-911 trial in Tennessee will use the state’s new Emergency Service IP Network (ESInet) to allow AT&T subscribers to reach 911 call centers via text message. AT&T isn’t the only American cell carrier looking to roll out text-to-911 services either. Verizon announced its plan to do the same with select call centers by early next year.