911 texting capability now available in central Ohio

File photo (WBNS-10TV)

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Central Ohio residents with emergencies now have the option to text 911 instead of placing a call.

Franklin County on Wednesday joins about a dozen other counties statewide allowing the emergency texts.

Officials say a call is still preferable but texting is an important option if someone is hiding during an emergency and it would be dangerous to be heard on the phone.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the $2.5 million program is funded by fees paid by device users on their monthly bills.

The system can only handle texts and needs a sufficient cellphone signal. Photos, videos and emojis can't be transmitted.

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