Here's one for the keeping up with the times file. It seems that Black Hawk County, Iowa's 911 service will now be accepting text messages for emergency calls. This comes from MobileCrunch.com.
As is said in the article this seems like a great idea at first but you have to remember there are several issues.
It's only one place for now. Until this is rolled out on a large scale a small county in Iowa will likely only benefit the residents. I mean don't start texting 911 from your phone you might be sorry when no one shows up to help.
Time counts. Texts are nice but it can take forever to reply if you don't have someone that is quick on either end. How many times have you sent a text from your mobile phone and it takes 10+ minutes to get a response from someone. The operator might be quick but trying to get your location might not be as fast.
Texts aren't dependable. This is true. Everyone has sent one, or more, texts that just seemed to disappear into the void of cell phone nothingness. If you get into a car accident or fall down a cliff not getting a response might lead to disaster.
Find you. It's hard enough to trace the cell phone as it is now can you imagine text messages. If the person sends a text but doesnt' say their location and then goes unconscience tracing the exact place this person is might be impossible and that means critical minutes lost.
So althought at first this seems great, and with much improvement it could be great, it does seem like for now this is just a very early adopter. We hope to see more progress like this with cell phones in the future. With more people having phones every day and even more people droping their landlines in favor of a cell phone new methods will be happening all the time, but for now we suggest that you stick to dialing 911 in all cases and speaking to a live person so you know you are safe.
Also if we havne't stressed it enough if you are on a cell and in trouble or trying to help someone in trouble please make sure to tell the operator as exact a location to find you as possible so that in time critical situations they can make every moment count.