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When To Call 911

What reasons should I call 911?

The only time you should call 911 is if a person is badly hurt or in danger right now!

Reasons to Call 911

Personal Safety at Risk
Gang Violence

Crash Injuries
Car vs. Pedestrian

Medical Conditions
Trouble Breathing
Chest Pain
Unconsciousness; No response
No signs of life

*There are exceptions to the above

It's important to make sure you are safe before you call 911. If your home is on fire, for instance, leave the house before calling 911. You can always call from someone else's house.

Speak slowly and clearly when you explain what's happening. The 911 emergency dispatcher will ask you these questions:
• What is the Address of the emergency?
• What is the phone number you are calling from?
• What happened?
• What is the Age of the patient?
• Is she/he conscious and breathing?

Don’t Hang up
If you do have to call 911 in an emergency, be sure to stay on the phone. Do not hang up until the 911 operator tells you it's OK to do so. That way, you can be sure that the operator has all the information to get help to you fast!

When not to Call 911

911 should never be used for road conditions, directions, burn day checks, time checks or as a source of information for telephone numbers.

Not every intoxicated or withdrawing person requires an emergency medical response. Below are some criteria to assist in determining if an individual need medical attention.

Before calling 911:

Attempt to wake up the individual (verbally or a gentle shake to the shoulder)

If they are/can:

Easy to arouse

Walk independently or with the use of their cane, walker, etc.

Speak so that you can understand them

And if they are not:

Actively seizing

Actively bleeding or have head trauma or other trauma beyond simple abrasions


If the above criteria are met, and they do not want medical services, ask if you can call a service for them. Below is a list of services that may be able to provide assistance:

*Westside Emergency Housing Shelter

            505-595-6547 or 505-595-6402

*St. Martins Hopeworks


*ABQ Health Care for the Homeless


*Shelters for Women and Children

            Barrett House           505-243-4887

            Safe House               505-247-4219

            Joy Junction             505-877-2708

*Runaway Hotline    




*Suicide Intervention