The Metropolitan Police Contact Centre has asked members of the public to think before they dial after a male called 999 and asked for the police owing to the fact that his breakfast was late.
The audio recording of the call has been released (scroll down) in order to highlight how hoax or inappropriate 999 calls can have the effect of preventing someone who is in genuine need of help from getting the assistance which they require.
In the call, a male says
“I was sat for about half an hour, waiting for my breakfast and it didn’t turn up”.
In response, the calm and professional 999 call handler says:
“so there is no police emergency then, you just didn’t get your breakfast as quickly as you wanted it”.
A spokesperson for the Met Contact Centre said:
‘Imagine if one of your friends or loved ones was in need of the police as quickly as possible and it turned out we could not help because we were having to deal with one of these calls”
The bizarre call highlights the sort of pressure that 999 call handlers are under when they have to waste their time speaking to individuals who have blatantly misused and/or abused the emergency 999 system.
Unfortunately, calls such as this one are not rare and we even have a dedicated section on our website that catalogues the time-wasting calls which have been made to the emergency services and which could never be regarded as an emergency.
Police, ambulance, fire and coastguard control rooms only have a limited number of lines into their ‘hubs’ and people who abuse the 999 system in this way risk
Our colleagues in control rooms up-and-down the country should not have to waste their time speaking to individuals such as the male in this call who clearly should have known better than to call 999 because his breakfast was late.
How anyone with an ounce of common sense could ever come to the conclusion that a late breakfast is worthy of a 999 call is beyond me.
Of course, there will be 999 calls which are made by people who, for example, have learning difficulties and who genuinely do not realise that the 999 system is for emergencies only.
But the male in this call seems to honestly believe that his late breakfast should be reported as an emergency.
The mind boggles.
If you are unsure as to what does and what does not constitute a police emergency, then there is a great bit of information, hosted on the Gov.uK website, that can help you to understand when a call to the emergency services should and should not be made.
If you would like to know more, then CLICK HERE
999 call handlers do an incredibly stressful job without having to waste their time dealing with time wasters like the male in this call.
If you have a story, video or one-off blog that you would like to share with us, then you can contact our team of former emergency services & armed forces personnel either through our Facebook page, via Twitter ( @ES_News_ ) or you can contact us via email: email@example.com
If you run or manage a ‘job’ social media account and you would like us to share one of your stories then send us a tweet or a message!
If you would like to write an article that you would like us to share (it can be about anything to do with the emergency services / NHS) whether you serve in the emergency services / NHS or whether you are a member of the public who has had a good experience with the emergency services, then feel free to contact our team; anonymously if you prefer.
We are proud to act as a voice for the emergency services, armed forces & health service, with over 500,000 people visiting our website each month.
Before you go...
We need your help. As former emergency services & armed forces personnel, we pride ourselves on bringing you important, fast-moving and breaking news stories & videos which are free from the negative bias which is often directed at the emergency services & NHS by some sections of the mainstream media.
One of the reasons we started 'Emergency Services News' back in 2018 was because we became tired of reading badly informed stories about the emergency services & NHS which seemed only ever to highlight negative aspects of the job.
We want to be the unheard voice of the remarkable men and women who serve in the emergency services, NHS and armed forces. And with around 500k page views each month, we are getting there!
As income from ads, the mainstay source of income for most publishers, continues to decline; we need the help of you, our readers.
You can support emergency services news from as little as £1. It only takes a minute. Every contribution, however big or small, is vital for our future.
Please help us to continue to highlight the life-saving work of the emergency services, NHS and armed forces by becoming a supporter.