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When should I call 911?

Call 911 in the event of a police, fire, or medical EMERGENCY.  If you have a situation that requires the response of emergency personnel, call 911.  Do not call 911 to ask routine questions, seek information about traffic tickets, court, to get directions, or to ask for information about prisoners in jail.  If you are in doubt about whether your situation is an emergency, then play it safe and call 911


Listed are examples of reasons to call 911:

  • Car wreck
  • Someone is choking on their food
  • Fire of any type, house, woods or other building
  • If you see a crime
  • Dangerous situation such as gas leak or a power line down
  • Someone is drowning
  • Someone is hurt or is bleeding or is having trouble breathing
  • Tornado or other severe weather damages your home or business


How much does it cost to dial 911?

Calls made from your home, business, are billed up to $2.00 when you dial 911.  You may want to check with your local phone company for the exact charge for your location.


What should I say when I call 911?

Immediately give your location, name, and the nature of the emergency.  From there, let the professional Communications Dispatcher ask the questions.  Please be patient.  Help will be sent while you are talking to the person taking your call.  All you have to do is answer the questions.

Stay on the phone and answer the dispatcher's questions as calmly as you can. They will ask the following:

  • The location of the problem.
    If you do not know the address, be prepared to give directions or describe your location.
  • The type of problem.

Tell the dispatcher in plain language what is happening.

  • Details about the problem.

The Dispatcher is trained to get more information while the emergency units are responding


What should I do if I dialed 911 by mistake?

Don't hang up...stay on the line!  Everyone makes mistakes, and there is no penalty to accidentally calling 911.  The Communications Dispatcher will want to verify your name and address, and ensure that there is not a real emergency.  If you do hang up, they will call you back to confirm that you are safe.  If no one answers the attempted call back, the Law Enforcement Officers will be dispatched to your location to ascertain the nature of the call.


What type of calls are considered non emergency?

Do Not Call 9-1-1 if the problem is not an emergency, look up the non-emergency number in the phone book.  If you call 9-1-1 for non-emergencies, someone with a real emergency might have a delay in receiving service.  Do not call 911 to ask routine questions, seek information about traffic tickets, court, to get directions, or to ask for information about prisoners in jail or for the following reasons:

  • Loud party or music
  • Barking dogs or cats up a tree
  • To ask directions or for general information
  • To report water or electricity is out
  • To check if a police report is ready
  • To check for severe weather reports

Residential/Commercial Addressing - Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. How do I get a new address?

A. Each home and business in Copiah County should have an address. When you move in, the address does not change. If the person you buy or rent from does not know the address, call our office at 601-894-1658. We may determine the address over the phone if you know your new neighbor's names and addresses, and the correct road name.

If you are moving into a new structure or location, a new address number must be assigned. This requires us to drive to your new location to measure the address along the road. When you call 601-894-1658, tell us you need an address for a new structure.

Q. How are road names assigned?

A. Copiah County 9-1-1 has been designated as the street naming authority for Copiah County. We also coordinate street naming with the municipalities to avoid duplicate names. New roads are normally named by the residents or by the developer of a subdivision. We check that the proposed name is not already in use, and then the Board of Supervisors will approve or deny the request.

Q. Why are some driveways named?

A. When there are three (3) or more structures with addresses on a road or driveway, we assign a name and issue address numbers using the new road name. This is done to reduce confusion when responding to emergencies, and it also helps other people find you.

We sometimes name drives that do not have three structures when there are several land-owners along the road. This provides for addresses as the property owners develop their land.

Assigning a name to a private drive does not mean the city or county will start maintaining the road or that the mail carrier will deliver mail to the houses. It is still a private road, it just has an official name.

Q. How are Address Numbers Issued?

A. In Copiah County, we use a measured system to determine your address number. There are 103 numbers in each mile, or one address each 50.8 feet. (A mile is 5,280 feet) This system is very easy to use for emergency responders, mail and delivery services.

Examples of Addresses - If the distance to your home from the starting point of the road is X, then your address = Y

A Distance of = Address #

52 Feet 10

100 Feet 18

528 Feet (1/10 mile) 100

1/2 Mile 500

1 Mile 1000

5 Miles 5000

You can see that an address number can easily be "decoded" by anyone looking for a specific address.

Even numbers are on the right and odd numbers are on the left if you are traveling in the same direction the numbers are assigned.

When the fire department hears an address of 5750 they know it is 5-3/4 miles from the starting point, on the right, to this address.

Q. Can I get a list of names and addresses?

A. NO. We do not give out names and addresses to the general public. This information is shared with public safety agencies, but only for use in their official duties.

We do furnish address lists to other government agencies such as voter registrars, planning, tax assessor who need correct address information. We don't share phone numbers even with these agencies as many phone numbers are unlisted or unpublished.

Q. When can I apply for my physical address?

A. You can apply for a physical address as long as you have a driveway or flagged site where the future location will be located. Vacant land will not receive a physical address. You will need to obtain an address before you can apply for a building permit, perk test, telephone service or utility services.

Q. Where do I post my address house number?

A. The address number must be displayed on the front of the building or at the entrance to a building which is most clearly visible from the road during both day and night. If a building sits off the road and cannot be seen from the road, a sign post needs to be placed at the end of the driveway nearest the road. The house numbers need to be displayed on the sign post with a minimum of 3" reflective numbers. The sign post will not be necessary if mailbox sits at driveway and numbers are displayed on the mailbox.

Q. Who do I need to inform of my new address?

A. You need to notify everyone of your address including the telephone company, bank, utility company, cable company, Tax Office, postal service, solid waste, and anyone else you do business with.

Q. Why do I need a 9-1-1 address?

A. The reason to implement 9-1-1 is to reduce the time it takes to respond to an emergency situation.

Q. I don't receive mail at my house. Do I still need a 9-1-1 address?

A. The 9-1-1 Dispatch Center needs to have a locatable address for every house that could potentially call 9-1-1. Even if you receive mail at a P.O. Box or from another location, you must still have a 9-1-1 address.

Q. How do they come up with my 9-1-1 address?

A. A Distance Based Addressing scheme is used to determine your address. Every 50.8 feet is a potential address. The resulting number is the address. Odd addresses are on the South or West side of the road, with the even on the North or East side of the road. There is an exception to this rule when concerning a dead end road. Our numbers run low to high, south to north, and west to east.

Q. Why do I have to notify the phone company if my address changes?

A. Even though we maintain a database of all structures in the County, we cannot keep up with changes in telephone numbers, people moving, etc. If your address changes for any reason, you must contact your telephone company. If you need to call 9-1-1, it will be from a telephone. Only the phone company has an up-to-date database of all telephone numbers and the addresses for them. If the telephone company doesn't know where you live, neither will the emergency services that respond to the call from your house.

Q. How do I get my road fixed?

A. Call the Supervisor over your District in Copiah County. The list can be found at and click on Board of Supervisors.

Q. Where can I get a map of my property?

A. Contact or visit the Tax Assessor Office.

Q. Where can I pay or get information about my current property tax bill?

A. The Tax Collector accepts current (not delinquent) property taxes.

Q. Where can I pay delinquent property taxes?

A. The Chancery Court Clerk accepts delinquent property taxes.

Q. Where do I file homestead exemption?

A. The Tax Assessor's office accepts applications for homestead exemption from January 2 through April 1, every year.

Last Updated on Friday, 25 February 2011 17:34