911 Dispatch Communications
Call if you can, TEXT if you can't
Text to 911 services are now available in Riverside County. Using a phone to dial 911 is still the most efficient way to reach emergency help. Use Text to 911 only when calling is not an option.
Use Text to 911 if you are hearing/voice impaired, are in a dangerous situation where you are unable to speak, or during a medical emergency in which you are incapable of speech.
Simply enter 911 in the “to” field of your message, provide your location and the nature of your emergency, and respond to any questions the dispatcher sends.
Text in English only. Translation services are not available at this time. Do not send pictures or videos. Do not use emojis, acronyms, abbreviations or send in a group message.
Our Dispatch Centers
The Communications Bureau is the critical link between the community and patrol units in the field. Dispatch communication centers are staffed 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department has three communication centers. Central Dispatch is located in Riverside, the Coachella Valley Dispatch Center is located in Palm Desert, and the Colorado River Dispatch Center is located in Blythe. The centers provide the highest quality and most professionally competent public services to over one million residents of Riverside County.
Dispatch communications centers handle emergency 911 calls for service as well as wireless calls, non-emergency, and allied agency calls. The calls for service range from in-progress crimes such as a robbery or an assault to non-emergency calls, such as past petty thefts or loud music disturbance calls. Communication centers are also responsible for the dispatching of patrol units to calls for service and specialized units, such as Hazardous Device Team (HDT), Emergency Service Team (EST) and California Fire Arson Investigators (CF), to name a few.
Each new dispatcher is required to complete a nine-week Dispatch Academy, a three-week Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Basic Dispatch Course, and extensive on-the-job training. Two different communications skills are taught:
- Public Safety Answering Point (PSAP): Focuses on call-taking and interviewing techniques, as well as all phone, Computer Aided Dispatching (CAD), and records systems.
- Radio: Teaches the basics of dispatching calls for service as well as how to deal with critical incidents on the radio and the workings of the radio system.
Did You Know?
In calendar year 2019 Riverside County Dispatch Centers handled 1,732,146 telephone calls and dispatched 874,612 calls for service (CFS) with 289,754 being in-progress priority CFS.
Altogether, the Sheriff is responsible for policing nearly 1.4 million residents of the County’s population of 2.4 million.