Specialised safety equipment and service

Emergency TXT service

Deaf and hard of hearing people who have difficulty using a phone can register with Police to join the 111 TXT service. This service is only to be used in an emergency.

This is a nationwide service available to registered users wherever there is cell phone coverage. Registered users can contact the emergency services (Police, Fire and Ambulance) via text messaging on their cell phones.

Smoke alarms for deaf and hard of hearing people

There are a number of specialised smoke alarm systems available for people who are deaf or are hard of hearing. These alarms have extra features such as extra loud and/or lower pitch alarm sounds, flashing strobe lights, or vibrating devices.

Ideally, you will have hard-wired, interconnected photoelectric smoke alarms fitted with bed-shakers, strobe lights, pagers or a combination of these. However, this may be too expensive.

Contact one of the 4 organisations below for advice as to the most appropriate options available for you to consider.

Deaf Aotearoa, Your Way Kia Roha and Blind Low Vision NZ may also be able to tell you whether you're eligible for funding from the Ministry of Health, or for a system that is installed by Housing New Zealand when appropriate.

Free home fire safety visit

If you, or someone you know, is elderly, disabled or has a Community Services Card, you may qualify for a free home fire safety check.

Just call 0800 NZ FIRE (0800 693 473) to see if you're eligible for a visit from Fire and Emergency New Zealand and a free fire safety inspection of your home. You may qualify to have a free long-life, photoelectric alarm installed.