In most places in B.C., the emergency phone number for fire, police and ambulance is: 9-1-1. The 9-1-1 call is free, even from a pay phone. You can ask for help in your own language if you do not speak English. Learn to say the name of your language in English.

In some communities, the number is not 9-1-1. It is different. Check for the number inside the front pages of your telephone book or ask your local police department.

If you have a medical emergency, you can call for an ambulance or you can go directly to the emergency department of the nearest hospital. You do not need an appointment. There may be a charge for ambulance service.

How to Dial 9-1-1

Watch the video below for an example of how to call 9-1-1.

This video was made in collaboration with AMSSA, BC Ambulance Service, BC Poison Control Centre, E-comm 911, ELSA Net, HealthLink BC and Vancouver Coastal Health. This project is made possible through funding from the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia.


When disasters, like earthquakes or floods, happen, it’s important to be prepared. PreparedBC provides information to help you and your family prepare for emergencies.