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How to Use Amazon's Alexa for an Emergency Situation

Ambulance at an Emergency Room
Alexa can help you dial 911

Whether you've purchased an Amazon Alexa-enabled device for an older or disabled relative, or simply want the peace of mind knowing that help is easily and readily available in the event of an emergency, Alexa can help.

Amazon Alexa-enabled devices such as the Echo, Echo Dot, or Echo Show cannot natively call 911 on their own, but landline owners can purchase an Echo Connect (about $35) to make and receive phone calls via Alexa, including calls to 911. With this scenario in place, emergency operators will have the ability to see the location the call originated from as well.

Additional solutions remove the possibility of calling 911 directly via Alexa but will allow Alexa-enabled device owners to contact a network of caregivers or friends.

Alexa device owners can enable and configure the free "Ask My Buddy" Alexa skill to send emergency notifications to select contacts by saying "Alexa, ask my buddy to send help."

Alexa users may also consider signing up for an IFTTT account to benefit from easy task automation. IFTTT (If This, Then That) scripts, or applets, allow devices that might otherwise be unable to communicate with one another, do so easily and for free. This IFTTT applet allows Alexa users to fill out a simple form and email an auto-populated "send help" message to up to 20 designated contacts when a trigger word is spoken to Alexa, for example, "Alexa, emergency."

For more Amazon Alexa tips, information and insight, join our Facebook group or check out 4 Ways Amazon Alexa Can Help Seniors.

If you're a business owner or marketer looking to reduce costs, increase productivity, or to extend your brand experience in a way that simplifies tasks and delights consumers, we’re here to help.  Contact us to start a conversation. 

About the author

Jill Schmidt is a lover of data-driven communications and a keen follower of digital marketing best practices and trends. Throughout her 18 year tenure in marketing and advertising, she has worked on digital account strategy and campaigns for companies such as Colgate, Kellogg, Kimberly-Clark, Briggs & Stratton, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and many others.   She is the creator and writer of a triple award-winning email newsletter. Founding member of the Milwaukee Interactive Marketing Association, former Vice President, and seven-term board member.  

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