Aug 9, 2019

In the face of all the natural and man-made disasters that our country faces regularly, emergency situations can happen at any time and any place.

For mobile subscribers, emergency services have now become more accessible as the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) announced that the emergency 911 hotline is now free of charge for mobile subscribers around the country.

Smart, Talk N’ Text, Sun Cellular, and PLDT subscribers will now be able to make calls to the emergency hotline, free of charge. Globe subscribers will still be charged a fee in order to contact 911, but the DILG notes that the telecommunications provider is currently working on waiving these fees in the future.

“Do not hesitate to dial 911 in an emergency. We will not let the lack of mobile credit get in the way of saving lives as every second is important during emergency situations,” said Interior Secretary Eduardo Año.

Despite this, Año reminded people that prank calling emergency hotlines is punishable by law. The secretary noted that Presidential Decree No. 1727 states that pranksters will either face jail time up five years, or a fine up P40,000.

According to data from the Emergency 911 National Office, about 15% of calls received from January to July 2019 have been fraudulent. The 911 hotline receives about 3,500 calls per month, with less than 100 legitimate calls.

Photo courtesy of Marilia Castelli from Unsplash

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TAGS: emergency 911 hotline emergency services nolisoli