Twin Falls Sheriff’s Office: Don’t Update Your Voicemail if You are Stranded
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX)-In response to information circulating on social media, the Twin Falls County Sheriff's Office said people shouldn't update their voice mail message if they are running low on battery and lost.
The message has been circulating on social media recently advising people to update the voice mail on their cellphone with their current condition if they are ever lost in a remote area and running low on battery. Sgt. Ken Mencl with the Twin Falls County Sheriff's Office said that is probably not the best advice in that sort of situation, "If you have any battery life, probably the best thing you can do is to send a text message. It'll only take a fraction of a second of data, reception, to get that message out, which has a much better chance to make it through than updating your voicemail." Plus, Mencl adds that if you don't have cell service in the first place the voicemail won't update, "you're just wasting your battery attempting to do so."
Some of the ways to conserve battery life on your phone are to turn off the wifi, Bluetooth, and put it in airplane mode. Reducing the brightness also helps conserve energy. He said to compose a detailed message to trusted contacts and law enforcement on where you think you are at, your condition, and if you can, provide the GPS coordinates, that will help search and rescue crews locate you much faster. Sgt. Mencl said even if you have spotty reception, try calling 911. He said the best chances anyone has of being located is to leave a detailed plan if they are headed into a remote area and give it to a family member or a friend who then can give it to law enforcement. But, most importantly if you do get stranded Mencil said "Our best piece of advice is to stay with your vehicle and stay near the road or trail."