BSL999 service from the My SOS Family Emergency Alert App
Updated: May 18
Accessing Emergency Services Made Easier for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Individuals
For individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing, seeking assistance during an emergency can be a daunting task. In the United Kingdom, immediate help can be obtained by dialing the emergency services at 999. However, this can present challenges for those who communicate primarily through British Sign Language (BSL). Fortunately, the BSL999 service steps in to bridge this communication gap.
BSL users who are deaf or hard of hearing can now communicate with emergency services using BSL999, a video relay service. Available round the clock, seven days a week, this service can be accessed at no cost, offering a direct line of communication for individuals in need. It can be utilized on various devices such as computers, tablets, and smartphones.
How BSL999 works
When contacting the BSL999 operator, users are immediately connected to a relay interpreter who accurately translates their BSL signals into spoken English for the emergency services. By eliminating the need for a third-party interpreter, the BSL999 service ensures that precise information is conveyed promptly, which is crucial in time-sensitive emergency situations.
My SOS Family & BSL999
In an effort to enhance accessibility for deaf or hard of hearing individuals who use British Sign Language, the renowned emergency alert service My SOS Family has integrated the BSL999 service into its mobile application, available for both Apple and Android phones.
With just a single tap on the My SOS Family App, users can request assistance from their loved ones in unexpected emergencies. Simultaneously, the automated response system of My SOS Family connects the user to the BSL999 operator, enabling them to converse seamlessly in British Sign Language.
This integration offers numerous benefits to My SOS Family users who are deaf or hard of hearing and use sign language (BSL), enhancing their communication effectiveness during emergencies.
By providing direct access to emergency services, this feature eliminates the need for a third-party interpreter and allows for immediate assistance. Users have the option to connect to BSL999 when necessary, ensuring efficient communication.
It is important to note that individuals who are deaf and only know how to sign in languages other than English, such as Spanish, German, or French, may not be able to utilize the BSL999 service. The service specifically caters to those who communicate using British Sign Language. However, it is worth exploring whether other countries offer similar services. For instance, France has "Urgence 114," which functions similarly to BSL999 but uses French Sign Language. In France, My SOS Family app users are connected to the Urgence 114 emergency service.
Share with others
Deaf or hard of hearing individuals who rely on British Sign Language can greatly benefit from the BSL999 service and the resources it provides.
If you know someone who is deaf or hard of hearing and communicates through signing, they may find value in trying the My SOS Family App.
It offers an easy-to-use and useful solution that can provide extra protection and peace of mind during emergencies.