LEXINGTON, Ky. — Officials say people in four central Kentucky counties can now use texting to communicate with emergency dispatchers.

               

Lexington Mayor Linda Gorton said in a statement on Thursday that people can now send text messages to 9-1-1 call centers in Fayette, Jessamine, Garrard and Lincoln counties. She said operators can also send text messages to a 9-1-1 caller if needed.

               

Gorton called it "a huge step forward in public safety."

               

Lexington Division of Enhanced 9-1-1 Director Robert Stack says text messages should include the location of the emergency and an explanation of the help needed. He says messages should be brief and shouldn't include photos or videos, which can't be sent.