Mikela Gorski ‘15 – The Tempur-Pedic bed feels enormous and warm. Your parents, vanished from sight because a business trip has stolen their presence from you. The television screen illuminates your dungeon of a room. The house appears to have a sense of tranquility, sifting through the cracks of the maple hardwood flooring. The smell wafts from the scented candle on your nightstand; leaving a feeling of peace in the air. Fresh cut roses are the only thing your senses perceive. Your eyes are becoming droopy from all the chores you completed in your home earlier that day. Your mother always lectures that maple hardwood floors will not clean themselves.
As your body begins to fall asleep, an imaginary alarm goes off in your mind. You suddenly contemplate whether or not you locked the front door. Puzzled, you pull your right leg out of the sheets into the bitter cold atmosphere. Your bare foot grazes the frigid floor; a chill instantly travels up your spine, leaving you in goosebumps. For a moment, the cold almost convinces you not to check the door. Your instincts kick in. Thighs brush against one another as you tiptoe down the stairs.
You make your final steps and your face loses all color. The front porch light gently splashes onto the floor; leaving you to see dirt footprints on your once clean maple hardwood flooring.
The earlier confusion is replaced by fright. Paralyzed for only a moment, until fear slaps you out of the groggy daze. Your thoughts are flustered. There’s someone in your house. Running quietly up what seems to be the longest staircase, the intruder hears you. Before the intruder makes his way up the staircase you snatch your phone and hide. Snuggled tightly in the small compacted space you realize help must be called for. As that thought pops into your head you hear the shuffles of the strangers’ feet in the same room as you. You can’t call for help, he will hear you.
This very moment the thoughts that were once puzzled become clear. Access to help is now available through text. You have the ability to text for help because you live in Oakland county. Your hand shakily slithers down to your pocket in search of your cellphone. The relief stemmed from the feeling of typing 911 was almost tangible. You finally remember how to breathe. In the same moment help has responded and they are on the way.
The simple text assisted the police and just saved your life.
“Having the ability to text 911 is a great idea!” Jennifer Palka said. “If you have ever seen Taken you would know that if she was able to text for help she might of not been taken.”
Oakland county is currently working with TeleCommunication Systems and wireless service providers to enable text-to-911. This will allow individuals to text 911 in an emergency.
The text-to-911 service works just as any text conversation. The 911 operator utilizes a web browser to respond within seconds.
“Texting in my opinion is more convenient,” Michelle Syty ‘15 said. “Especially if there is an emergency.”
In the first three months of 2014 over 271 individuals attempted to text 911. More counties need to participate. Texting 911 to receive help could be a wonderful tool and could potentially save someone’s life.