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Relay UK

Contact 999 using Relay UK

We're proud to do our part

Here to help the deaf, hard of hearing and speech impaired make emergency calls.

In an emergency situation, you need help fast.

The Relay UK service lets deaf, hard of hearing, or speech-impaired people in the UK alert police, ambulance, fire, or coastguard services by either calling via a relay assistant or texting a message to 999 using our emergencySMS service.

999 using a Relay Assistant

Dial 18000 instead of the normal 18001 through the app or from a textphone


  1. On the Relay UK app, simply tap the 999 button and then confirm to make an emergency call – or call 18000 on your phone’s dialler.
  2. Once prompted, click ‘Join’ in the app window.
  3. You’ll connect to 999 and a Relay Assistant.
  4. Tell them which service you need and follow their replies in the app’s conversation window.
  5. The 999 Operator will then connect you to the right emergency service


1. Call 18000.

2. You’ll see ‘Emergency, which service? GA’ on your screen.

3. You’ll connect to 999 and a Relay Assistant.

4. Tell them which service you need then follow their responses on the textphone screen.

5. The 999 operator will then connect you to the right emergency service. 

999 using a text: emergencySMS

You MUST REGISTER YOUR PHONE before you can use it. See how to set up emergencySMS.

1. Register your mobile

Text the word 'register' to 999.

You'll need to register again if you change your phone number.

2. Read the message

You’ll get an automatic text reply. Please read it all. 

3. Reply to the message

Read the message and then reply by texting ‘yes’.

4. Get a 'success' text

You'll then get a text telling you that your mobile is now registered - or if there's been a problem…

5. Check it

Text 'register' to 999 and you'll get a message telling you if it's registered or not. Don't text anything else - there's no need to make a test call.  You're now set up.

Can't register?

If you try to register but don't get the 'success' text, check with your mobile provider to make sure they support the emergencySMS service.

Set up your mobile now

Don't leave it until you need it, that's too late.
Do it now so you're ready, just in case.


Text 'register' to 999

How to use emergencySMS to call 999

In an emergency, we suggest you use emergencySMS to contact the emergency services only if you've no other option. This is because it will take longer than the standard voice 999 service or the Relay 18000 service.

What to put in your text

The service you need: ambulance, police, fire or coastguard


What's the emergency?


Where's the emergency? Be precise, including the name of the road and town and, if possible, more details like the house number or nearby landmarks or main roads.

Example of a good text

'Ambulance. Man having a heart attack. Outside Nibbles Pizza. Glossop Road Sheffield S10'


Be as accurate as possible when giving the location. The better your information, the faster the emergency services will be able to send help.

Send the message to 999

The emergency service will reply to you either asking for more information or telling you that help is on the way.

Make sure 999 gets the message

Don't assume that your message has been delivered until you get a reply. A text delivery report doesn't mean your message has been received by the emergency service.


It can take a couple of minutes to get a reply. If you haven't received one, call 18000 (if you’re able to) or, if possible, ask someone to call 999 for you.

Emergency services access for British Sign Language (BSL) users

You can use the 999 BSL emergency video relay service, the UK’s first ever emergency service to be fully accessible to the deaf community. 

More about the 999 BSL emergency video relay service.