If you need an interpreter on a 999 call

If you need an interpreter, tell the ambulance service the name of your language - in English.

For example, “Arabic” or “Ukrainian”.

We use a service called Language Line.

The interpreters at Language Line could be anywhere in the world, so it might take time to find someone who speaks your language.

The line will go quiet when the ambulance service is arranging an interpreter. There might be some beeping noises. Do not end the call, stay on the phone.

(You will only need to hang up and call again if there is a long continuous tone)

It is helpful for us to know the address of the emergency in English before we contact an interpreter.

In very serious situations, we can start to arrange help while we wait for an interpreter.

If this is difficult, don’t worry, you can tell us when the interpreter is available.

When the interpreter is ready, you will speak to them.

For the ambulance service to know what help you need, we need to know who you are calling about and what has happened.

The ambulance service will tell the interpreter what questions to ask. Answer the interpreter and they will tell the ambulance service.

The call will go quiet while the interpreter speaks to the ambulance service.