How can I get help in an emergency?

Call 9-1-1 if you have a life-threatening emergency. The 911 operator can get an interpreter for you, if you need one. 

Life-threatening emergencies are when you need to:

  • Stop a crime
  • Report a fire
  • Save a life
  • In any emergency situation
  • Whenever you need police, fire or ambulance assistance immediately

If you need to take an ambulance to a hospital, the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care will pay for most of the cost. You will have to pay a small fee ($45). If the doctor who sees you at the hospital does not think that ambulance service was necessary, you must pay the full cost ($240 or more).

It is free to call 9-1-1 from home phones, cell phones and pay phones.

When You Call

The 911 operator will ask you these basic questions:

  • "Where is this happening?"
  • "When did this happen?"
  • "What is happening now?"
  • "Who is involved?"
  • "Did you see any weapons or was there any mention of weapons?"

You should:

  • Remain calm and speak clearly.
  • Say what you need: ambulance, police, firefighters.
  • Describe what is happening.
  • Give your exact location (for example, 263 Main Street, Apt. 216).
  • Give your name and telephone number.
  • Provide more information if you are asked for it.
  • Do not hang up until the operator tells you it is OK to hang up.

If You Need an Interpreter

If you cannot speak to the 911 operator in English, ask for service in your language. Say the English name of the language - for example, say "Spanish" or "Chinese - Cantonese." The 911 operator can get an interpreter for you, right away, on the phone. They have access to interpreters who speak more than 140 languages.

If it is Not an Emergency

Non-emergency service numbers are listed online usually on municipality websites.

For More Information

Last updated: May 17, 2018 4001262