When should I call 911?

You should call 911 for any emergency.


The use of 250-354-3919 for all non-emergency reporting helps to keep the 911 lines available for people reporting an emergency situation.

If you are unsure how serious an incident is, call 911 and they will advise whether or not to call the non-emergency number 250-354-3919.

Examples of Emergency 

Examples of calls to 911 for police:

  • an event that involves an immediate threat to person or property (e.g. screams or shots fired)
  • a substantive in-progress crime (e.g. fight, break and enter or impaired driving; this includes drug dealing if the suspect is on scene)
  • a serious crime that has just occurred (e.g. sexual assault or robbery)
  • a suspicious circumstance that may indicate an immediate criminal act (e.g. prowler, door-to-door salesperson who doesn't have proper identification, vehicle "casing" the neighbourhood)

Non-Emergency Examples

Examples of non-emergency calls for police:

  • reporting a crime with no suspect (e.g. theft of license plate)
  • reporting a non-emergency crime with suspect, but suspect is not on the scene (e.g. fraud)
  • reporting a serious crime with suspect, but with a lengthy delay (e.g. assault that occurred last night at a bar)
  • non-emergency incidents in-progress (e.g. noisy party, barking dog)
  • ongoing crime issues, not in-progress (e.g. graffiti problems, or ongoing drug dealing with the suspect not on the scene)
  • a suspicious circumstance that may indicate an on-going criminal activity (e.g. marijuana grow operation)

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1. When should I call 911?