Reporting an Incident / Safety Tips

Quick Tip: Stay calm, know your location, dial 911. 

Emergency 911

Non-Emergency Numbers 
     GVSU Police & Security (616) 331-3255 
     Ottawa County Central Dispatch (800) 249-0911 
     Silent Observer (800) 825-0221 


Call 911 when there is an imminent threat to life or property:

Imminent threat
Injury / Possible injury
Irrational behavior
Property damage
Suspicious activity
Hazardous condition
Crime in progress or about to happen
Will immediate response result in apprehension

What you need to do: Stay calm Know your location Dial 911 

Reporting an Incident:

  • Stay calm. Take a deep breath prior to the call. Try to remain in control and communicate clearly.

  • Know the location of the emergency and the number you are calling from. Many 911 centers have enhanced capabilities to see the caller's location and phone number, but dispatchers must confirm the data. If you are disconnected, emergency responders should know your location and phone number.

  • If you reach a recording, listen to what it says. If your call cannot be completed, hang up and try again. If all call-takers are busy, wait! A dispatcher will speak to you when available.

  • Wait for the dispatcher to ask questions. Answer all questions clearly and calmly. If you are in danger of assault, you will still need to reply, even if you do so quietly, to answer "yes" and "no" questions.

  • Let the dispatcher guide the conversation. The process may seem lengthy, however emergency responders are being sent while you are on the line. Dispatchers must rapidly obtain accurate information while considering the well-being of the public and the safety of the responders.

  • Follow all directions. Listen carefully and follow each step exactly. Ask for clarification if you don't understand.

  • Keep your eyes open. You may be asked to describe victims, suspects, vehicles, or other events at the scene.

  • Do not hang up the call. Wait until you are directed to do so by the dispatcher.

General Crime and Prevention and Safety Tips

Keep your eyes and ears open at all times. Know your surroundings. Know what may appear unusual or out of place. Be prepared for the unexpected.

Know locations of emergency exits/shelters, fire extinguishers, and first aid supplies. Know whom to contact in an emergency. Know your location (street, cross streets, address, building name, room number).

Information will be relayed more accurately with a faster response time.

Emergency phone boxes are located on the exterior of all living centers. They can be used to report any type of incident to GVSU police or to request assistance.

Do not hang up. Stay on the line and tell the dispatcher that everything is all right so a police officer is not sent.

Page last modified September 27, 2017