'Busier than New Year's Eve': Unprecedented day for police during hot spell

West Yorkshire Police said it experienced its third busiest ever day during a recent 24-hour period.

By Nick Frame
Thursday, 23rd June 2022, 7:15 am
Updated Thursday, 23rd June 2022, 7:17 am

There were over 2,000 total calls from members of the public into the customer contact centre from 6am on Friday, June 17, to 6am on Saturday, June 18.

Along with people phoning 999, others called the non-emergency number 101 and used 101 live chat, email and online reporting services.

Tom Donohoe, customer contact centre manager, said: “This was completely unprecedented and more in line with what we might expect to see on New Year’s Eve, which tends to be our busiest day of the year.

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The police contact centre.

"On an average New Year’s Eve we take around 1,850 999 calls and during this 24 hour period we took 2,007.

“I want to make it absolutely clear that we would never dissuade anyone from contacting the police for legitimate police business but when contact levels are that high, we need to ensure that people are contacting us for the right reasons. We are asking people to please help us to help you.

“On a daily basis we are still receiving nuisance calls, calls that should be for other services such as local authorities and the RSPCA, and calls that can be dealt with online.

“While online contacts do still count within our total contacts, they tend to be quicker for both the member of the public and the customer contact centre team to deal with.

“Please always call 999 in an emergency, where there is a threat to life or crime in progress, but consider looking online before phoning the police for other matters.”

The soaring rate last week coincided with the rising summer temperatures.