I've had this same problem in SA, thinking the emergency number was either 999, 911 or 112.
It raises an interesting issue: South Africa has the only 5-digit emergency number in the world, and in a country where people must use it a lot it might make sense to find a way to route all the above numbers to the emergency services.
SWC 2010 might be a good opportunity to fix this problem.
Pretoria - It has transpired that a police reservist who was shot three times during a house robbery in Murrayfield, Pretoria - and complained after he got no reaction from police after calling 10111 four times - never called the number at all.
After a member of the community police forum called the 10111 number after the attack on Johnny de Jager, 52, and his girlfriend Karen Victor, 47, police were on the scene within three minutes.
De Jager admitted on Thursday that Victor had called 911 on her cellphone after they were attacked by two robbers on Friday night. De Jager said he never called 10111 himself.
He was under the impression that Victor had called 10111 and that he was busy talking to an operator from the 10111 call centre.
Gauteng communications head Govindsamy Mariemuthoo said the 10111 call centre had no record of calls from De Jager or Victor.
In an investigation by 10111 it was established that they had called 911. They had called this number three times.
According to Mariemuthoo they had reached the cellphone network Cell C's emergency centre where an ambulance was called but not the police.
The first call that police had received about the incident, was on Friday night at 21:18 when a member of the community police forum called 10111.
The operator at the call centre immediately sent a vehicle to the scene which arrived within three minutes.