If you’ve ever accidentally called 911 on your iPhone, you need to read this

In an emergency, you can press the button on the side of your iPhone several times to quickly put you in touch with 911. The feature is called Emergency SOS, and it’s useful in the event of a serious car accident or home invasion, where you may be incapacitated or need to be discreet, but unfortunately, it’s also easy activate the function by accident.

CNET Tech Tips Logo

If you have children or have a tendency to play with your iPhone, it is quite common to call the emergency services by mistake. All it takes is a few clicks or a long press and suddenly you’re not just calling 911, you’re also texting your loved ones, telling them you may be in danger. And that’s a problem if you’re not really in trouble.

Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to prevent the Emergency SOS feature from being activated accidentally, while keeping the feature available in the event of an actual emergency. In this guide, we’ll show you how to turn off a few settings so you no longer misdiall 911 on your iPhone.


Playing now:
See this:

Top iPhone tips: CNET’s mobile experts demonstrate our access…


13:01

While you’re here, check out these 2 iOS 16 Settings You Should Disable Right Now to Help Conserve Your Battery.

How Emergency SOS is accidentally triggered on iOS

You can enable Emergency SOS to call emergency services in three ways:

  • Press and hold the side and volume buttons
  • Quickly press the side button five times
  • Slide the Emergency SOS slider

It’s the first two options that are easy to activate and can accidentally call emergency services, so we’re going to disable those two and leave only the third enabled.

Emergency SOS settings on iOS

Disable both of these settings to help prevent your iPhone from accidentally calling 911.

Nelson Aguilar/CNET

How to prevent your iPhone from accidentally calling 911

To disable both quick access options, start the Settings application and enter SOS emergency. Then disable the following two options:

  • Call with Hold: Press and hold the side and volume button for several seconds.
  • call with 5 presses: Quickly press the side button five times.

If you’re running an older version of iOS, you may have different settings, but they’re the same as above, just differently named. If you see Call with side buttonthat’s the same as Call with 5 pressesY automatic call is the same as call on hold.

And although these settings will be disabled once you turn them off, don’t worry, you can still activate Emergency SOS by holding down the key. volume and side button for a couple of seconds and then sliding the SOS emergency slider to the right. It takes a few seconds longer, but it’s still a simple way to contact emergency services in no time.

You may also want to disable the new glitch detection feature in iPhone 14

If you have an iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro model running iOS 16, there’s a new accident detection feature that detects if you’re in a serious car accident and calls emergency services. After it is activated, you have 20 seconds to cancel the call or emergency services are dialed.

Reportedly, the accident detection function was accidentally activated during roller coaster rides and other wild moves for some peopleso you can choose to disable this feature if you don’t want to risk accidentally calling 911. To disable accident detection, go to Settings > SOS emergency and disable Call after a serious accident.

Accident detection feature on iPhone 14

This feature is only available on the iPhone 14 series.

Nelson Aguilar/CNET

Don’t like other iPhone settings? If so, take a look at these Annoying iOS 16 Settings and How to Fix Them Y how to move browser bar to top in safari.

Leave a Comment