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General Press Releases

Posted on: June 21, 2023

Do Not Hesitate - Call 9-1-1

Westmont, Illinois - Date Issued: June 21, 2023

FD - 911 - 2023-06-20

“There are too many instances in which we learn after the fact that people hesitated calling 9-1-1 in an emergency situation,” said Fire Chief Steve Riley. “In an emergency situation, seconds can mean the difference between life and death. Calling 9-1-1 immediately at the first hint of a possible emergency situation is the best way to save lives and protect property.  Westmont has first responders stationed on both sides of the downtown Westmont railroad tracks and we typically arrive at the location of the emergency within a couple of minutes.  I cannot stress enough how important it is to call 9-1-1 for all emergencies.  Do not hesitate.”

Following is a list of SOME of the types of The Westmont Fire Department would like to remind residents when to call 9-1-1.  Following is a list of instances when to call 9-1-1:

  • FIRE - If you see a fire, call 9-1-1 - Remember, big fires usually start out as small fires
  • CRIME IN PROGRESS - If you are witnessing a potential crime in progress, call 9-1-1
  • CAR ACCIDENT - If you see a car accident, call 9-1-1 - a person may be injured or the accident may be causing a potential traffic concern
  • INJURY OR MEDICAL EMERGENCY - If a person is in physical or emotional distress, call 9-1-1 - whether a person is struggling to breathe, having chest pains, experiencing an allergic reaction, bleeding heavily, or expressing emotional distress, do not hesitate, call 9-1-1.
  • SUSPICIOUS BEHAVIOR - If you witness any type of suspicious behavior, do not hesitate, call 9-1-1

First responders, Police, Fire and Paramedics, are trained to respond to emergency calls and provide assistance. However, some people don’t call 9-1-1 when there is a legitimate emergency for a variety of reasons, such as: assuming someone else has already called, not wanting to get involved, feeling uncertain that this particular incident is an emergency.  

“Many of us have been brought up to hesitate calling 9-1-1, unless it’s a ‘true’ emergency,” said Westmont Police Chief Jim Gunther. “Public safety technology and communications systems have greatly improved over the years. Dispatchers can handle emergencies and less urgent calls without tying up the phone lines. If you want or need an emergency services professional to respond to an incident, call 9-1-1 immediately. Don’t hesitate or wait until regular business hours.”

The Westmont Police and Fire Departments want all of our citizens and guests to feel comfortable calling 9-1-1. Even if a situation ends up not being as serious as initially thought, it is better to be safe, than sorry.

“In some cases, we have responded to fires in which there are numerous people on the scene of the fire and taking pictures and videos for social media, but no one actually called 9-1-1 to report the fire,” added Riley. “I cannot stress enough how important it is to call and report emergencies as quickly as possible. Don’t hesitate - call 9-1-1.”

CALL 9-1-1


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