North

Yukon now has territory-wide 911 service

The emergency service can now be accessed through any Yukon landline, or by mobile phone where cell service exists. Until now, 911 has only been available in the Whitehorse area.

'It's extremely important for the safety of everyone,' says head of fire chiefs' association

The Yukon's new 911 call centre opened inside the Emergency Response Centre in Whitehorse, in February.

Yukoners now have easier access to emergency services, with the activation of basic 911 service across the territory.

The service can now be accessed through any Yukon landline, or by mobile phone where cell service exists. Until now, 911 has only been available in Whitehorse.

Officials from the territorial government, Northwestel, and emergency services made the announcement Thursday, in Whitehorse.

'No need to test 911,' said Jim Regimbal, president of the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs. 'It is up and working fine.' (CBC)

"It's extremely important for the safety of everyone," said Jim Regimbal, Dawson City's fire chief and the president of the Association of Yukon Fire Chiefs.

"It's not going to get the trucks out of the hall quicker and to the scene quicker, but we'll receive the call quicker."

All calls are routed through an RCMP call centre in Whitehorse, which opened last winter. The territorial government provided money to hire and train additional RCMP operators to staff the new call centre.

Emergency officials say it's important for Yukoners to have a proper civic address posted at their residence, and visible from the road.

But Regimbal adds callers can still provide a description of the location to dispatchers who will pass it on to local responders.

With files from Dave Croft

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