If you are not in the emergency services, then you would probably be surprised at just how many people abuse or misuse the 999 system on an hourly basis.
You would be forgiven for thinking that emergency control room staff would only ever deal with life-or-death emergency calls being made by people who are in dire need of help and/or assistance.
Unfortunately, this is not the case.
We have covered some of the most ridiculous 999 calls which have been made to our emergency services, including the male from the Thames Valley Police area who called 999 because of a duck. Yes a duck!
The duck in question had been spotted by the male, in a river, looking a ‘bit cold’.
Upon being met with the sight of a duck in the wild, in the winter, who looked a bit cold, the male thought that the best course of action to take at the time was to call 999 and ask for the police to come and help the duck.
Needless to say, that the police did not go to the ‘call’ and suitable words of advice were given.
This morning (8th Sept) we have heard about a 999 call that was received by the Essex Police Force control room from a male who called the cops, because he had missed his last train home.
Now we all know how annoying it can be when you run to the train station, only to see that your only means of getting home anytime soon, is slowly pulling out of the station. But good timekeeping will normally prevent this from happening.
Now in this rather annoying situation, most sensible people would call for a cab – they would not call for the Cops.
In a video shared on the Essex Police Force Control Room twitter feed, a force control room member of staff said:
“I remember once taking a call from a guy who had got himself all the way to Shenfield train station, and by that time it was around 2 o’clock in the morning and the train service had stopped.
“He called us up on the brazen assumption that we were just going to pick him up and take him back to his address in east London.
“I said to him that we aren’t a taxi service and his reply was that he was ‘vulnerable’
“I asked him then how are you [vulnerable]? I said that it was his own fault – your’e on a train and you have got back – your’e an adult on you should know what time the train services finish and make a contingency for yourself.
“It’s not up to essex police to return you home because you have overslept on a train on a night out”.
When you mix alcohol with self-entitlement, then sometimes people will actually believe that a police vehicle, on a busy night shift, should be taking them home rather than them just simply jumping in a cab and making their own way home.
Of course, we should not forget just how many wasted calls the ambulance service and fire service also get from people who should really know better.
From my experiences in the RNLI, the Coastguard seem to be less prone to calls which are clearly a complete waste of time – so that’s a positive I guess!
On the NHS website, it says that you should only call 999:
‘In a medical emergency. This is when someone is seriously ill or injured and their life is at risk.
Medical emergencies can include:
- loss of consciousness
- an acute confused state
- fits that aren’t stopping
- chest pain
- breathing difficulties
- severe bleeding that can’t be stopped
- severe allergic reactions
- severe burns or scalds
Call 999 immediately if you or someone else is having a heart attack or stroke. Every second counts with these conditions.
Also call 999 if you think someone has had a major trauma, such as after a serious road traffic accident, a stabbing, a shooting, a fall from height, or a serious head injury’.
Our international oppos (colleagues) also have to endure these types of calls as well.
A Canadian woman recently dialled 911 after hearing ‘yelling’ and ‘shouting’ coming from her neighbour’s apartment; which is fair enough. Or so you might think.
When the cops arrived, they pounded on the door until the occupant finally opened up.
That’s when they discovered that the man was in no danger. He’d just been having a rough time on the toilet. (Source: web.orange.co.uk)
A burglar in Shelby County, Ohio, was also recently caught by police after he accidentally butt-dialed 911 while breaking into a home.
Making matters worse: The crook hid in a closet, but was ratted out by his phone yet again when the low battery alarm went off. (Source: wdtn.com).
So remember, next time you go to call 999 just think ‘is it a genuine emergency’.
Remember that the police have a non-emergency number (101) and the NHS has one too (111).
Written by one of the many admins of Emergency Services Humour who is also a regular blogger in our fortnightly eMagazine ’S__ts & Giggles’ which you can sign up to by visiting our Facebook page and clicking on the ‘sign up’ button or by visiting ShitsAndGiggles.Online
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