Richland Co. residents urged not to text 911

Officials advise NOT to text 911

RICHLAND COUNTY, SC (WIS) - Officials in Richland County are now asking resident not to text 911 in case of an emergency.

The "Text to 911" program was announced as a new tool for residents to use with Hurricane Florence making its way toward the Carolinas. However, Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott, Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook, and Columbia/Richland Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins are asking residents not to use the service.

"While we are excited about this new technology, we feel that it is not in the best interest of public safety to launch this new feature during a critical weather event," officials said in a joint statement late Thursday night.

Officials say the program is currently in a pilot stage. Instead of using the text to 911 feature, residents are encouraged to call 911 for all emergency services.

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