See below a list of some of the important emergency contacts.
General South African Emergency Numbers
Nationwide Emergency Response – 10111
Dial the telephone number 10111 from anywhere in South Africa and a call centre operator will answer the incoming call, take all necessary particulars and assign the complaint to a Flying Squad patrol vehicle, or the local police station, to attend the incident.
Cell phone emergency – 112
Call 112 from any cell phone in South Africa. You will then reach a call centre and they will route you to an emergency service closest to you.
When you dial this number you will reach an automated menu. Don’t let this frustrate you. The menu acts as a form of triage (priority of treatment) control and filters out abuse of the medical and emergency system.
Ambulance – 10177
This number can be used in the case of a medical emergency and can be called in conjunction with both the fire and police department respectively, depending on whether or not there are casualties.
Specific Emergency Numbers
- South African Police Service : 10111
- Crimestop : 08600 10 111 – report criminal activity anonymously
- Ambulance : 10177
- ER24 : 084 124
- Netcare 911: 082 911
- Fire Brigade : 998/999
- Life Line : 086 132 2322
- Arrive Alive Call Centre : 0861 400 800
- Child Line: 080 005 5555
- Child Welfare South Africa : National Head Office : 011 492 2888
- National AIDS Helpline : 0800 012 322
- Rape Crises 24 hours life line : 0861 322 322
- Suicide Helpline : 0800 567 567
- Alcohol Anonymous : 086 143 5722
- Narcotics Anonymous : 088 130 0327
- Corruption Helpline Line : 080 020 1414
- The South African Depression and Anxiety Group : 011 262 6396
- Stop Gender Violence helpline : 0800 150 150
- National toll-free helpline : 0800 12 13 14 or SMS 32312
What to say
You need to provide this information when making an emergency call:
- The nature of the emergency.
- Exact location of the incident, including nearby landmarks.
- The details about any injuries and possible suspects.
- Your personal information.
What should you tell your kids and caregiver?
It is vital for your children and your domestic staff to know how to call for help when they need it. Explain to them the different emergency scenarios so they can identify what constitutes an emergency, such as a medical emergency, fire, and stranger danger, and who to call. It is also important to communicate the details of who will be responding to their call, and why they need these people to come and help.
Show them how to call for helpOnce your children are old enough to dial a phone and know their address, as well as mature enough to understand why they would be reaching out, you should start teaching them what to do in case of an emergency situation.
Show your child and your caregiver how to call for emergency services and what to say. Practice this as many times as it takes until they know and remember the steps without you showing them. Reinforce regularly, so they don’t forget.
Teach your children how and when to press a panic button
Make sure everyone knows where the panic buttons are in your house and teach your children how and when to press the panic button. The benefit of a panic button means young children who don’t yet know their address can be taught to press a linked panic button and have a signal received by a security company knowing exactly where they are.
Free emergency apps
Namola: At the touch of a button, the Namola app alerts police and other emergency agencies, as well as citizen responders, to the fact that the user needs help. GPS technology allows responders to pinpoint your location to help them reach you faster.
mySOS: mySOS provides tracking assistance, tracking your movements and letting your contacts know if you’re in danger. It also serves as a “one-stop-shop” solution for access to the closest and most appropriate emergency services in South Africa.
The app also recently launched a small wearable panic button that notifies your mySOS emergency contacts if you need urgent help, with no need to find your phone or look through your contact list.
In an emergency situation, it’s crucial to get help fast. Having the right numbers in your phone goes a long way to making sure that happens.