Public Education

Do you know what to do if someone is badly injured or suddenly becomes sick? You should. Knowing how to call for help in an emergency can help save a life. Take a few moments to read this information. Share it with your family and friends.

Call 911 In Emergencies Only
Call 9-1-1 when you think someone's life is threatened: when someone faints or collapses, has persistent chest pain or difficulty breathing, or is badly injured. On the other hand, going to a doctor's appointment, getting a scraped knee bandaged or filling a prescription does not require EMS assistance.

Know What To Say
When you call 9-1-1, tell the emergency operator where to find you, who is hurt or sick, and what happened. The emergency operator will need to know what condition the victim is in and if any help is being given. They may ask you several additional questions. Answer all of them. Stay calm, speak clearly, and stay on the phone until told to hang up.

Know What To Do Until Help Arrives
You've called for help. The ambulance is on the way. What do you do while you wait?

  • If the emergency operator gives you specific instructions, remember them and carry them out.
  • Don't move a victim unless they are in danger.
  • Do try and keep them warm and comfortable.
  • Make it easy for the ambulance to find you by turning on a porch light or sending someone to meet the ambulance.

If you're not sure if it's an emergency, call 9-1-1. Place this number by each phone in your house, and teach your children how to call 9-1-1.

Sometimes as we age we develop medical problems. Heart disease, high blood pressure and diabetes are some of the most common illnesses in the region. Sometimes we can have these problems and not realize it. Portsmouth Fire Rescue and Emergency Services providers know that having these conditions can be difficult, and we want you to be SAFE.

See your doctor regularly for check-ups. Your doctor knows you and will help create a plan for your health.

Ask questions. Do not be shy about asking your doctor for information. Write your questions down if you need to. Remember no question is a dumb question!

Follow your doctor’s instructions. It is very important that you take your medicine in the right amount at the right times.

Exercise and eat right. Small changes in your activity and food can make big differences. Talk to your doctor about what is right for you.

By working together with your doctor you will feel better and have more time to spend with your family and friends. 

Every day, emergency vehicles respond to urgent requests for help from the public. The call may be for an armed hold-up in progress, fire alarm, or someone having a heart attack. All drivers must know their responsibilities when approached by an emergency vehicle with lights flashing and siren sounding.

Do you know what to do?

  • Don't panic and slam on the brakes.
  • Pull as near as possible and parallel to the right-hand edge or curb and stop.
  • Remain stopped until the emergency vehicle has passed.
  • Don't stop in the middle of a curve.
  • Don't stop on or while cresting a hill.

Precious minutes lost while responding to an emergency can be the difference between life and death. Help us help others by pulling to the right and stopping! 

© PFRES | Focus on the Community