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''Text with 9-1-1'' services launch in Oxford County

Last Updated Sep 7, 2016 at 4:09 pm EDT

Stock photo of a Woodstock Police car.

It took nearly a year to develop and refine, but there is now a new way for those with hearing issues in Oxford County to get help in an emergency.

Woodstock Police have teamed up with its Emergency Services Partners to launch ”Text with 9-1-1″ services.

It allows those who are deaf, deafened, hard of hearing and speech impaired (DHHSI) to get in contact with emergency dispatchers via text message.

”Woodstock Police are excited about the 911 launch. This is a progressive piece of technology that is being offered to all Oxford County residents, visitors and people traveling through our County. We can now ensure all members of our community are able to communicate with emergency services if required,” Deputy Chief Darren Sweazey said in a news release.

There are some steps you have to take to set up the service.

First, visit textwith911.ca and register your phone number with your service provider.

Call takers will then utilize a special app that allows them to not only recognize a call coming from someone from the DHHSI community, but also text with the caller to deal with the emergency.

However, text messages sent to the digits “9-1-1” do not reach emergency services.

You must dial 9-1-1 from your cell phone and the 9-1-1 call-taker will initiate a text conversation.