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AARP AARP States South Dakota Health & Wellbeing

Text-to-9-1-1 Now Available in South Dakota


AARP SD is excited to help announce the introduction of a new program in South Dakota, Text-to-9-1-1, which will allow wireless cell phone users in SD to send a text to 9-1-1 during an emergency when they can't complete a traditional phone call.

This service is not limited to any particular group but it has been especially touted as valuable resource for individuals who might be deaf, hard of hearing or speech impair or individuals suffering from a medical emergency that affects their ability to hear or speak, such a stroke.

The South Dakota Department of Public Safety shares these tips for individuals who are unable to call 9-1-1:

  • Don’t text and drive.
  • In the first text message, send the location and type of emergency.
  • Text in simple words; keep the text message short without the use of abbreviations or slang.
  • Be prepared to answer questions and follow instructions from the 9-1-1 call taker.
  • Voice calls to 9-1-1 are still the best and fastest way to contact 9-1-1.
  • Call 9-1-1 if you can, text if you can’t.

For more information, visit

Please be advised: Text-to-9-1-1 is not fully activated in Todd County as of the release of this article. Individuals in Todd County are encouraged to continue calling 9-1-1 until the texting service is fully available.