SALINE COUNTY, IL (KFVS) - The Saline and Gallatin County E-911 joined Union and Jackson County on Wednesday, January 14 by turning up the Next Generation 911.
The Next Generation 911 system is a National Pilot Project for all of North America by the National Emergency Number Association. It is an IP based 911 system that allows for more redundancy.
Saline County hosts one of two data centers that have been placed in opposite locations of the state, and allow both data centers to back each other up if there is a disruption.
As it continues, the system will allow pictures and video into the system.
Since September, Saline County has been running outbound only text to 911, but on Thursday, Jan. 15 the ability to text to 911 was turned on.
"A voice is always better and is much quicker that a text, but if you are unable to call, then text," said Tracy Felty, Saline County 911 director. "We have used the outbound text to 911 several times since September, usually for someone that is lost at the Garden of the Gods, where cell phone reception is poor. We also receive calls from some Kentucky counties, have been able to text the caller with further information."
Saline County became the first agency in the region to offer text to 911 services, and only the second agency in the state of Illinois to offer the service.
They encourage dialing and calling when you can.