Have you ever needed to call 999 (in a genuine emergency) only to find that you end up in a worrying ‘queue’ waiting for your call for help to be answered?
If you have then you, quite rightly, probably wondered why you could not get through to the operator in order to get help for whatever emergency was happening at the time you made the call.
Unfortunately, too many people still do not seem to understand nor comprehend what constitutes an emergency rather than an ‘annoyance’.
The police are not here to deal with ‘annoyances’ they are, or at least they should be, here to deal with real and genuine emergencies.
Take this 999 call that was made to Derbyshire Police as a prime example of what does not constitute an emergency.
Someone took it upon themselves to call 999 and ask for the police in order to report the fact that someone had parked across their drive (and no, it wasn’t an ambulance this time!)
A tweet that was shared on the Derbyshire Police twitter account said:
“999 call received today as somebody had got a car parked across the bottom of their driveway and they wanted to go out…
“Please think about use of 999. This is for emergencies only! Please call 101 for non-urgent Police matters, or contact us here.”
How anyone could possibly think that a police car would come racing to their location on blues-and-twos because their drive was blocked is totally beyond me!
Did the person who made the 999 call think that the police would be diverted from responding to, for example, a call about a robbery in progress?
Or that rather than responding to reports of someone armed with a knife, then they would instead make their way to the blocked drive!?
For anyone who is still not sure, despite the fact that the 999 system was introduced in June 1937, there here are some examples as to when you SHOULD call the police using 999:
when there is or likely to be,
- danger to life
- use, or immediate threat of use, of violence
- Serious injury to a person and/or
- serious damage to property
- the crime is, or likely to be serious and in progress
- an offender has just been disturbed at the scene
- an offender has been detained and poses, or is likely to pose, a risk to other people
Road traffic accident
- involves, or is likely to involve, serious personal injury
- the road is blocked or there is a dangerous or excessive build up of traffic.
As you can see, using 999 to report that fact that someone has parked across your drive is NOT on the list! and for good reason! It’s not an emergency!
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