Cell phones account for almost 70% of all 911 calls in the United States. In Hopkins County that number is around 90% according to local law enforcement. Yet, even the smartest of cellular phones cannot always be accurate in sharing your location with 911 dispatchers. In fact 95% of cell phones are inaccurate in identifying your location to 911 nationwide. Local law enforcement says the longer the caller is on the line the greater the opportunity for location accuracy to be determined in Hopkins County.
The cellular 911 calls also depend on the carrier. Those with a contract are often easier to locate. Phones that are prepaid are not always accurate. When a cellular phone 911 calls is received, if the conversation is short and there is a hang-up, often only the tower that the call originates from is found. The longer the conversation and certain carriers provide a more accurate location.
However, landline phones provide the name and address of the number. Originally, 911 was designed for landline phones, which provide the caller’s location over a hard-wired connection. However, 45% of Americans are opting out of landline coverage at home. National authorities state that cellular 911 calls provide a slower response time. Not all emergencies are at home but most medical emergencies, drowning calls, and home break-ins do according to experts.
Some national safety leaders are advocating the return of the landline for homes.