911 call center becomes first to accept texts

August 5, 2009 1:36:47 PM PDT
An 911 call center in Waterloo, Iowa, is the first in the country to accept text messages. The call center starts accepting and responding to texts sent to "911" on Wednesday afternoon. Call centers around the country are looking at following in its footsteps, since calls are now just one of many things phones can do.

Black Hawk County police chief Thomas Jennings says 911 texting should be of particular help to the county's deaf and hard-of-hearing residents, who have had to rely on more cumbersome methods to reach 911.

For now, 911 texts only working with one local carrier, i wireless, and only in Black Hawk County.

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