New iPhone Emergency Features Could Help Save Lives

The iPhone has recently come out with some features to help you in the case of an emergency

FARGO, ND — The iPhone has recently come out with some features to help you in the case of an emergency.

Our phones usually don’t leave our hands, our pockets or our sight.

We are constantly using them to talk to our friends and answer work emails, but in this technological world we live in, they could also be a life saver.

“The one thing that every one of those people has in common is when they woke up, they didn’t know they were going to need us,” said West Fargo Fire Chief, Dan Fuller.

You can now fill out an emergency medical card that can be accessed by anyone using your phone.

“If it helps you get through, use it,” said Mary Phillippi, the Director for the Red River Regional Dispatch Director.

“It’s going to take a little bit for emergency services to catch up with the technology but having that there on your phone, that would be really, really useful,” Fuller said.

When it comes to calling 911, Phillippi says dispatchers want to be fast and efficient.

“We also want to do it right,” she said.

The iPhone is not only making calls to emergency dispatchers more accessible, but safer.

The features are simple. Click your power button five times fast, and your medical ID and 911 access appear in an instant.

Make sure if your auto call is on, your countdown sound is off.

That loud noise will give you away if you’re in danger and need to be discrete.

But that’s not the only way to get help.

“People are in situations where they don’t want somebody to know that they’re getting a hold of 911 so they’re texting 911,” Phillippi said.

Only about 15% of the dispatch centers across the United States have “Text to 911” and both North Dakota and Minnesota are “Text to 911” states.

“A lot of people might not realize it but this is a pretty big deal,” Phillippi said.

It’s not just Apple who is looking to save lives but Google has some similar features.

What happens when you need help but your phone is nowhere to be found?

“If you’re in a car wreck and your phone is normally sitting on the dash, it is not going to be on the dash by the time you find it,” Fuller said.

Whether your pocket friend is Siri or Google, activate the listen feature and ask them to call 911.


Those at Red River Regional Dispatch say don’t try calling or texting 911 to test out the features, because it’s already been established they work.

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