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Ottawa elevates 9-1-1 service to connect with other cities

November 29, 2023

Health, public safety and emergencies

Ottawa residents can now connect with 9-1-1 services in another city when someone needs assistance in a life-threatening situation outside of Ottawa.

This new service spans 9-1-1 services across North America and was implemented from a suggestion made by local resident Michael Wood at the City’s Emergency Preparedness and Protective Services Committee.

Ottawa residents requesting an emergency service, such as a wellness check for someone living in another city, can now dial 9-1-1 and request to be connected to 9-1-1 services in that city. Residents will no longer need to search for the local non-emergency phone number for another city. With a direct call transfer between 9-1-1 services, time will be saved in emergency and life-threatening situations.

The use of this new inter-city 9-1-1 is for emergency situations requiring immediate assistance when lives are at stake or when there is a threat to public safety.


“In times of urgency, distance should never be a barrier to getting help. Whether it’s a wellness check for a loved one or assistance needed beyond Ottawa’s borders, our residents can now simply dial 9-1-1. It’s about staying connected and supporting our friends and family, even if they’re miles away. Now we can, thanks to the great initiative by a local resident and the close collaboration between the City’s Public Safety Service, Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service and other stakeholders.”

Mayor Mark Sutcliffe, City of Ottawa

“Thanks to the advocacy of one Ottawa resident, all residents now have a more efficient and streamlined way to request emergency help for friends, family or loved ones in other cities. This is an example of how resident participation at City Hall can enhance service delivery.”

Councillor Riley Brockington, Chair of the Emergency Preparedness and Protective Services Committee

“The ability to transfer 9-1-1 calls means people can access the help they need for their loved ones quickly. It will reduce stress and anxiety in those most urgent and terrifying situations, which I have experienced firsthand. I am thrilled to see the City of Ottawa take this important first step towards modernizing the 9-1-1 system.”

Michael Wood, local Ottawa resident

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