THAILAND TO USE β€˜911’ AS THE MAIN EMERGENCY NUMBER

Thailand’s government has decided to use β€˜911’ as the main emergency phone number nationwide, in order to connect to more state agencies than dialling the existing β€˜191’.

The Thai cabinet has approved a bill on emergency telephone numbers, according to the deputy spokesman of the Prime Minister’s Office. The numbers 191 and 1669 will still work for police and the ambulance service respectively, he said, adding that misuse of the 911 line may lead to prosecution.

The cabinet chose from 911, the hotline used in the US, and 112, used mainly in European countries. “The cabinet thought 911 was more appropriate since people might confuse 112 with Section 112 of the Criminal Code] and this may tarnish the [royal] institution,” he added. The penalty for breaking Section 112 ranges from three to 15 years.

Meanwhile, a national committee chaired by the prime minister, will be set up to administer the 911 system.