In an emergency, call 9-1-1 to reach Police, Fire or Ambulance. If you observe suspicious/criminal activity and a suspect is present, call 9-1-1. Do not assume someone else has already called the Police.
What is an Emergency?
Any crime or incident where there is risk of injury or death or any in-progress crime.
Your 9-1-1 call will be prioritized based on the seriousness of the event you are reporting and based on what else is happening in the City at the same time.
To decide if you should call 9-1-1 simply remember - is it an emergency? An emergency is defined as something that is happening right now that is endangering a person or property and you can see it, hear it or smell it. Emergencies such as a theft in progress, an assault in progress, an impaired driver, etc. The key word for an emergency call is that it is "in progress".
For additional information see:
For all non-emergency incidents, where no suspect is present, call the Police non-emergency number (604) 278-1212.
Non-emergency calls are things such as noise complaints, a break and enter not in progress, mischief/damage to vehicles not in progress, driving complaints, etc.
Please contact the 24 hour City Emergency Line (604) 270-8721 for incidents such as: serious water and sewer problems, road obstructions, traffic signal malfunctions, downed trees, icy roads or other problems of this nature.
When you call the police:
- Give your name, phone number and address
- If using a cell phone, state the city you are calling from
- Stay on the line until told to hang up
- State the problem
- Give the location of the problem
- Give a description of the person(s) and or vehicle(s) involved
- Give the direction of travel of suspect(s) and or vehicle(s) are travelling
- Follow the instructions of the operator
Call the police even if you think the incident is too insignificant. Informing the police about crimes can help to prevent future crimes.
If you witness a crime:
Without putting yourself in danger, note any details which may be helpful to the police:
- type of crime (auto theft, assault, etc.)
- location: the street address or nearest cross streets
- any weapons involved
- description of the suspect(s) (height, weight, colour of skin, eyes, hair, and clothing)
- description of vehicle(s)
If you are the victim of a crime or witness a crime, use this Incident Checklist to record the details.
What happens to me when I call the police?
The police need to know as much as possible when they deal with actual or suspected criminal activity. When you call the police, the operator will take as much information as is required to be able to send the police to deal with the situation. But more information may be needed later, or facts may need to be checked out, so always leave your name and telephone number with the operator. You can remain anonymous. Neither the victim or the suspect will know who called the police. Simply tell the operator that you wish to remain anonymous and your privacy will be respected.