Can you use VoIP to make emergency calls?

October 11, 2023

Yes, absolutely! VoIP technologies have clever systems in place to ensure fast, quality connection to emergency services. However, you’ll have to make sure you have adequate internet access that continues to work properly in the event of a power failure. 

Many VoIP providers use AI and machine learning to ensure emergency calls or texts are processed quickly and accurately. AI has become so effective that it can even process communication when it is affected by distress in a caller’s voice. 

VoIP best practices for emergencies

Here are a few best practices to follow to ensure your VoIP emergency service is set up and working correctly. Obviously safety is your number 1 priority here.

Choose a reliable VoIP provider

It’s well worth doing your homework when choosing your VoIP provider, as the quality of their service can make a big difference in an emergency. Look out for 24/7 customer support and internet reliability to account for situations that may happen during odd hours of the day. 

Additionally, check for redundant network connections as they ensure networks operate properly even when faced with a power outage. 

Register your location ASAP

If your emergency happens at home or your place of business, you can save precious time by registering these addresses so that you don’t have to spend time directing emergency services to your location. 

Put your service to the test

Since emergencies are life or death situations, it’s wise to test its efficiency ahead of time. You want to make sure you have the correct numbers that you can access quickly. Test your VoIP provider’s internet connection to see if it’s good enough to last for the duration of the call.

You also want to confirm that you are able to hear the other person clearly and that the receiver of the call can hear you properly. Audio clarity is incredibly important as you want to ensure the person on the other end of the line receives all details correctly. 

How technology is addressing VoIP’s main challenges

VoIP is an excellent communication tool but it is not perfect. There are a few challenges that can hinder an emergency call, but VoIP has developed innovative systems to cope and ensure you’re able to communicate quickly, clearly, and effectively. 

Location accuracy 

VoIP is not always able to find callers’ locations and can cause disruption during an emergency. To address this challenge, VoIP providers have developed NG911 (Next Generation 911 Systems) that uses powerful technology like GPS and WI-FI positioning to determine locations accurately - even when the caller is indoors. 

NG911 also allows callers to send images, videos, and texts so that first responders get a comprehensive picture of the emergency at hand. 

Power outages 

Power outages can have a major impact on a caller's ability to get through to emergency services as VoIP relies on internet connectivity and adequate electricity supply to function. 

VoIP providers have upgraded infrastructure resilience to withstand the effects of power outages. One main strategy used is the strengthening of network systems by incorporating redundancy and failover systems to ensure continued operation in the event of a power outage. 

Ready for VoIP? 

Making the leap to a digital phone system can be a little daunting. But with the landline switch off just around the corner, now is the time.

Why not sign up for our free 7-day trial? It’s a great way to rest out all the business-friendly VoIP features on offer, without the commitment. 

Don’t forget, if you’d like to talk to us about any aspect of VoIP or the landline switch off, feel free to give our friendly expert team a call on 0203 617 9950.


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