911 is a joke…to Koreans in the US

I was just watching Korean TV from my posh executive digs here in Washington and a fun ad for a Korean-language emergency hotline came on. I’ll describe it for you:

There’s been a car crash. A besuited Korean man, bleeding but coherent, has called 911 on his cell phone. The music is urgent and dramatic. He speaks in slightly halting but proficient English:

“Hello my name is Park and I’d like to report an accident… no Park is my name! I have a rent-a-car… Hello? No, there has been an accident!”

Then an announcer begins speaking in Korean. The only word I can pick up is “hangukeu” (Korean language). Then an 800-number appears on the screen with some Korean text. End of commercial.

I can’t tell if the hotline is at all government-sponsored, but if there’s a real need for such services maybe it should be. I hope the 800-number doesn’t connect you to an ambulance-chasing lawyer or something.