Given 911 Call Taker Shortages, When Should You Call 911?

A helpful flowchart to let you know when you're out of line

Austin's 911 dispatch center has been severely understaffed for months, with about half of call taker positions being vacant.

On New Year's Eve, 200 callers were on hold for an average of 25 minutes. When people doing donuts blocked off an intersection last month, dispatch got nearly 400 calls in an hour and placed callers on hold for up to 27 minutes.

We can't afford to clog our 911 lines, so when should you call 911?


Flowchart by Maggie Q. Thompson

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS STORY

911, Austin Police Department, city of Austin

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