Citizens can text 911 in Danville in Pittsylvania County

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DANVILLE, Va. (WDBJ7) If you have an emergency but can't talk on the phone, you can now text 911 in Danville and Pittsylvania County.

It's just like texting any other number.

A dispatcher will receive the message and reply with a series of questions so they can respond to the emergency.

Danville's Emergency Coordinator says this is useful, because sometimes people are not able to talk on the phone.

"If they're held up in a hiding spot, they can text from that location, which gives them another element of safety," says Danville Emergency Coordinator, Steve Dishman.

Dishman says it's also useful because sometimes you can get a text to go through, but not a call.