Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) and 9-1-1

Many consumers are subscribing to Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services for their telephone needs.  Unlike traditional wire-line and wireless services, VoIP calls are routed over the internet to connect with the public service telephone networks.  These calls present unique challenges to the 9-1-1 system because the user account information is not validated in the same manner as wire-line and wireless phones.  Therefore, address information may not conform to 9-1-1 standards and not be reported to the Public Safety Telecommunicator.  Secondly, because VoIP devices can travel with the customer, a 9-1-1 call can easily be delivered to the wrong 9-1-1 center.  For example, a Farmington VoIP user calling 9-1-1 from Miami with a VoIP device may be routed to the Dakota 911 based upon the account information associated with the device.

Although VoIP providers and regulatory bodies are working to eliminate these problems, users should be aware and be prepared to describe their location while calling 9-1-1.

Please contact the Dakota 911 administrative number during business hours if you have further questions or e-mail us at

Questions We May Ask

When calling 9-1-1 or the General Dispatch number, you need to stay calm and be prepared to answer the following questions:

1. What is the location of the incident?

2. What is the nature of the call?

3. Is anyone injured?

4. What other pertinent information can you provide?

5. What is your name and contact number?