Open links to jump to page content
Relay UK

Emergency British Sign Language service launches in the UK

The new 999 BSL service will enable everyone in the deaf community who communicates using British Sign Language, to access emergency services via an approved BSL interpreter.


Saving more lives with the new 999 service for British Sign Language users

Members of the deaf community who use BSL can now connect to the emergency services much more quickly and easily.


The 999 BSL service launches today (Friday 17 June 2022) and is available free - 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.


Users access the service by clicking the ‘Call 999 BSL now’ button on any internet-connected device, using the 999 BSL website, or dedicated 999 BSL smartphone app – available for Apple and Android phones and tablets.


They’re quickly connected to an approved British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter, who will join a video call on the user’s device and relay the details to a BT emergency services operator, who then connects to the Ambulance, Police, Fire Service, or Coastguard, as needed.


When should 999 BSL be used?

This service is for emergency use only – such as:

  • If someone is seriously injured
  • Lives are at risk
  • There could be danger or harm
  • A serious offence is being, or has just been, committed.


If you need help, but it’s not an emergency, either use:


To find out more about 999 BSL – and download the app – visit the 999 BSL website.

17 June 2022