911 Facts in the Wild

You need to know that wireless phone service may not be available in the wilderness.
If service is available, your 9-1-1 call for help will be picked up by the nearest cellular tower in the most direct line of sight to your location.
It could be picked up at a county 9-1-1 center dispatch or even by the Canadian authorities.
Since these call answering centers are all located outside the boundaries of the calling area, they may have no way of knowing from where you are calling unless you tell them.
Be prepared to provide your location.

Start out with a fresh, fully charged battery and carry extra charged batteries with you. Keep batteries warm for extra-long use.
Be prepared to give complete information about the nature of the emergency.
You may only be able to make one call.
Turn off the phone when not in use.
Establish a call schedule with the emergency center so there are specific times when you will have your phone turned on to receive calls or to make calls out.


Your location, including the trailhead and nearest city, destination or waypoints.

Your wireless phone number, including area code.

How your wireless phone works.
Instruct everyone in your party on how to use your phone.
Your phone may be pre-programmed to dial 9-1-1 with one button.
You could accidentally call 9-1-1 and not even know it.
Handle your phone carefully to prevent the automatic misdialing of 9-1-1.

How to increase your signal strength. to include: pointing your antenna up; finding a clearing; gaining elevation; and turning your body – you may be obstructing the signal