When to Call Police

To report a crime in progress, or for immediate police assistance:

Call 9-1-1 or contact your local RCMP detachment or the police force in your area. Do NOT text message 9-1-1.

What Constitutes an Emergency?


  9-1-1 Emergencies

Emergency Situations  

  • When someone's life is in danger or there is an immediate threat
  • When a crime is in progress
    (e.g., a break and enter, assault, robbery, spousal dispute, etc)  
  • When a serious crime has just occurred and the suspect may not be far or may return  
  • When there is a good chance of arresting a suspect or preventing the development of a serious crime 

When making a 911 call

  • Remain calm and stay on the phone until you are told to hang up
  • Briefly state the reason for the call ( e.g., "I want to report a break and enter in progress")
  • Let the operator control the conversation. The questions are important to assist the officers who are attending.

    Be prepared to answer the following questions:
    • location of the emergency - include street name, building number, direction of travel (north, south, etc). If you live in a gated complex, give your intercom code
    • personal information - name, date of birth, address and phone number. Date of birth helps police to differentiate between people with the same name and assists in combating identity theft
Review the items on the incident checklist to assist you in answering questions


  • If you dial 9-1-1 accidentally, stay on the line and advise the call-taker. If that call-taker cannot reach you or a busy signal is heard, police will be sent


Non-Emergency Situations

  • When a crime that has already been committed and no suspects are present (e.g., theft from vehicle or home, vandalism, fraud)
  • suspicious activity or circumstance or less serious nuisance behavior
  • When you want follow-up information on a report you have previously made (Have your police file number available)

To report:

Sample Checklist When Calling the Police

Sample Checklist When Calling the Police

  • Date:
  • Time:
  • Location:
  • Suspect Vehicle
    • License #
    • Vehicle Model:
    • Colour:
    • Type:
    • Direction of Travel:
  • Suspect Description
    • Sex:
    • Age:
    • Height:
    • Ethnicity:
    • Complexion:
    • Eye Colour:
    • Eye Shape:
    • Hair Colour:
    • Length:
    • Hair Style: Build:
    • Beard/Moustache:
    • Tattoos/Scars:
    • Jewelry/Body Piercing: Glasses:
    • Accent:
    • Suspect Clothing
      • Hat: Emblem/Logo:
      • Shoe Style/Colour:
      • Jacket /Shirt Style/Colour:
      • Pants/Shorts Colour:
    • Type of Weapon
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