You should be prepared with the address or location where you need help.
When you dial 9-1-1 in Clackamas County, your call is routed to one of two Public Safety Answering Points (PSAP)
C-COM is a PSAP and another PSAP is located in Lake Oswego (LOCOM).
If you are calling from your cell phone, you could end up at either PSAP when you dial 9-1-1 (or at a PSAP outside Clackamas County. See Cell Phone 9-1-1 for more info).
If you are calling from a traditional landline telephone, your call is automatically routed to the PSAP that serves your address. If you are calling from a VoIP/Internet Phone, you should read information on Calling 9-1-1 from a VoIP/Internet Phone.
If you call 9-1-1 to report a non-emergency, you will be transferred to a pre-recorded message instructing you to call the non-emergency number (which will be given during the recording)
BE AS CALM AS POSSIBLE. Callers who yell are hard to understand. Try not to yell into the phone. We understand it can be very difficult to be calm during an emergency, but remaining calm and speaking clearly with get you the best help in the shortest amount of time.
When the calltaker answers your 9-1-1 call, they will ask for your address or location, and they will ask you if you need police, fire or medical. Be prepared to verify your address or the location where the emergency is occurring.
Call takers will always ask to verify your address even though they may have your phone number and address on their 9-1-1 screen. This is a backup measure to eliminate sending help to the wrong location.
After you tell the calltaker if you need police, fire or medical help, you will be asked a series of questions designed to get the proper help to you in the least amount of time.
Do not argue with the call taker, they are trained professionals and the questions they ask will get you the best help in the least amount of time.
If you are reporting a police emergency, calltakers will ask you specific questions to determine what is going on, if weapons or alcohol is involved, where any suspects may be located, descriptions of suspects and vehicles, and other details that will be relayed to responding police officers.
You may not always understand why a particular question is being asked, but answer it to the best of your knowledge. If you remain calm and answer the calltakers questions, you will get help faster.
If you are reporting a fire emergency, call takers will ask you questions to identify what is on fire, if flames are seen, if it is a field or brush fire they will ask if it is threatening any buildings and the size of the area burning, they may ask you the color of the smoke or if any hazardous chemicals are involved.
The calltakers understand that if you are reporting a house fire from your house, you will not have time to answer many questions, and evacuating yourself and your family is the priority. They will get help started immediately and advise you to evacuate the house.
If you are reporting a medical emergency, the call takers will ask very specific questions related to the medical problem. Responders and paramedics need the best possible information so they bring the right equipment and the appropriate amount of manpower, so the calltaker will pass on the answers to the questions to the responders as they are en route to your location.