This Is Not An Emergency…

This is a list of reasons why people have spoken to the police after dialling 999 (that’s like 911, only with more 9s and less 1s). Surprisingly enough, the police weren’t best pleased about this, as 999 is for the emergency services.

Similarly, if you’re filling in a computer system that requires you to supply a fax number, you should not “just put 9s in until you’ve checked out what the real fax number is” as after the computer system has dialled 999 for you repeatedly, the emergency service control room get a bit cross. Hypothetically. If such a thing were to occur.

999 is for use when an “immediate” response is required and should only be used in cases where a crime is happening now or if anyone is in immediate danger.Metropolitan Police

…and seemingly, they didn’t think that these fitted that criteria:

Central Scotland Police
— I was splashed by a puddle as I walked along the pavement
— I bought a rabbit advertised as having floppy ears but the ears aren’t that floppy
Northants Police
— I have been followed home by a cat
— I need to know what time it is
West Yorkshire Police
— I’ve lost my glasses and I can’t find them
— My neigbour’s lawn is overgrown and he won’t cut it
South Wales Police
— My husband has the TV remote and he won’t let me watch Eastenders
— I don’t have a £1 coin for a shopping trolley
Warrington Police
— There’s a fight in the chip shop, come quick — a fish is getting battered
Avon and Somerset Police
— Hi. I’m next to the M32, city centre… there’s an M32 city centre sign. Can you inform Animal Rescue that there’s a grey squirrel
— My wife’s left me two salmon sandwiches which was left over from last night… and I’m a sat in the chair here and she’s out there decorating. She won’t put any food on or anything for anybody
Surrey Police
— I am at Camberley railway station and there isn’t a train for ages…
Cleveland Police
— I’ve got an electricity fault — and the football was just about to start.
Essex Police
— There’s a spider in the bath
— My wife has got on the wrong bus, and now she’s in Romford
— I’m planning a picnic. What will the weather be like tomorrow?
Cambridgeshire Police
— I’m in Huntingdon, looking for Homebase and I can’t find it
— Is there a barbers shop open?
— They are doing poledancing at number three!

Avon and Somerset police even has a You Tube channel showing recordings of theirs.

I mean, I know people can be stupid, but how stupid do you actually have to be in order to think that a grey squirrel deserves a police emergency response? The sad fact is that while these are funny, there is the potential for serious harm to happen to someone else who doesn’t get to report a robbery or something because some twit is reporting his wife to the police for making him salmon sandwiches.

Sometimes I despair…

2 Responses to “This Is Not An Emergency…”

  1. Rob Mason responds:

    I’m amazed at how calm the operators stay during the whole call. The urge to swear and slam the phone down must be huge.

  2. mark fairlamb responds:

    i think it should be written in the operators job outline that they are allowed to shout & swear at these people if they want to, as long as they do it quickly and hang the phone straight up in order to free up the line. i heard one of these calls on the radio the other week and it was obvious from the start it was a time-waster, but the operator kept talking to them

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