KEYSER — Mineral County 911 has announced that they are now accepting texts to 911.

KEYSER — Mineral County 911 has announced that they are now accepting texts to 911.
Beginning immediately, if you aren’t able to call 911 safely you can now send a text message instead.
The process to text 911 is simple and detailed instructions can be found by visiting Mineral County Emergency Management and 911’s Facebook page.
Director Luke McKenzie says, “Text to 911 shouldn’t be used all the time; it is really designed to be used
for situations when calling poses a risk to someone’s safety. So now if it isn’t safe to call and you are in
Mineral County, you can simply put 911 in the ‘to’ box and type your message in the ‘message’ box.’”
Mineral County is one of many 911 Centers in the United States to deploy text-to-911. However, in the
state of West Virginia, Mineral County is one of the very few agencies to offer this service to its citizens.
Text to 911 does require an active plan with your cell phone carrier, so you will not be able to text 911 if
you have a deactivated cell phone.
When a person is texting 911, the first text message should include the address where you need help and what type of help you need, for example, police, fire, or an ambulance.
Text to 911 is just one of the many technological advancements that Mineral County has begun work on
in the last year. Mineral County 911 has also deployed RapidSOS which is a data portal in which about
60% of the time 911 operators can see the exact GPS location of a 911 caller, and the location
automatically updates every five seconds. For years, 911 Centers have been able to ping cell phones based
on what towers they were using, however that location is typically only accurate within hundreds of feet.
The utilization of RapidSOS allows for location accuracies as close as 10-15 feet.
“The best thing about RapidSOS is that it costs the county nothing. The service is provided at absolutely no cost,” McKenzie said.
“Also, as of right now, using traditional methods we would not be able to find a person’s location that sends a text message to 911, but thanks to RapidSOS we will soon be able locate many of our callers that choose to text 911.”
McKenzie added, “Although, we are constantly striving to have the best technology to serve our citizens,
none of it is perfect. The most important thing citizens can do to make sure they get the help they need
quickly, is know their correct 911 address.”
911 address information can be accessed by visiting address.mineralwv.com or by emailing the
addressing office at addressing@mineralwv.org or by calling 304-788-4111