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Text to 911 service coming to Northern BC

Text to 911 services are coming to Northern BC at the end of this month, providing a lifeline to the deaf, hard of hearing and speech impaired .

The Regional District of Fraser Fort George is teaming up with the District of Bulkley Nechako, Cariboo Regional District and Kitimat-Stikine to roll out the service through its 911 provider EComm.

RDFFG Director Terry Burgess is hard of hearing himself, says there is a big need for the service in the north.

“Even for me” he said with a laugh “But for the hearing impaired out there, they have great desire to have this in their 911 services.”

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He added that the District has been working on text to 911 since EComm took over 911 services a few years ago.

“I think EComm approached us, they had a capability of doing it and we jumped at the opportunity.”

Until now the service was only available in parts of the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island, something RDFFG Chairperson Art Khaen is happy fix.

“We wanted to make sure our residents that are having challenges with voice call recieve the same services as they do in the Lower Mainland.”

Text to 911 service will be reserved for only for the deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired. Users will also have to register ahead of time.

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