APCO Joins in Voluntary Industry Agreement to Offer Text to 9-1-1 Services

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The nation’s four largest wireless carriers, joined by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) International and the National Emergency Number Association (NENA), announced an agreement on a voluntary  commitment to offer text-to-9-1-1 services. APCO International helped to ensure the agreement will best meet the needs of the public safety community and other stakeholders. The four participating wireless service providers are AT&T, Sprint Nextel, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon. This agreement paves the way for a national approach to enabling the public to reach 9-1-1 via text messages, which can be especially important for persons with disabilities and for any situations where a voice call cannot be made. As part of the agreement, the carriers pledge to work cooperatively with APCO, NENA and the FCC to educate the public on the availability and limitations of text-to-9-1-1, as well as to train PSAPs on text-to-9-1-1. The general public should still continue to make a voice call to 9-1-1 whenever possible.

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