'If you can't find a toilet, please don't ring 999' The ridiculous 999 calls wasting valuable emergency service resources

Making car insurance enquiries, can't be bothered to wait on 101 and needing a lift - these are just some of the calls received by 999 emergency service call handlers in the last couple of days in West Yorkshire.

By Leanne Clarke
Monday, 10th August 2020, 12:44 pm
Updated Monday, 10th August 2020, 12:48 pm

West Yorkshire Contact Centre deal with hundreds of calls a day from people with genuine emergencies, but there are an average of 120 a day that are most certainly #NOT999.

Here are just a few from the last few days:

"Just had a call from someone who wasnt happy his holiday has been cancelled and thought it was a police issue. This is civil and not for the police to deal with."

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West Yorkshire Contact Centre deal with hundreds ofcallsa day from people with genuine emergencies, but there are an average of 120 a day that are most certainly#NOT999.

"If you have been dropped in one location by a taxi firm but have now changed your mind, ringing the police on 999 will not get you a lift."

"Just had someone ring up from the #Bradford area asking if they can have freinds around to their house. The new restrictions have been shown on the news, its on the internet so no need to ring us and ask us.

"Ringing 999 as you 'can't be bothered to wait on 101' is not acceptable. This line if for genuine emergencies and someone's life could be at risk whilst you make this call. Please bear this in mind.

"Caller has taken washing machine out of his house and damaged a pipe so water is flooding his house, rings 999 and expects police to deal. Then becomes abusive when we advise he needs a plumber and not a police officer."

"If you have purchased a washing machine and not happy with the quality then this isnt a police issue. No matter how many times you ring. "

"You cannot ring 999 as you aren't happy your local council have given you a parking ticket."

"Please dont call 999 asking for the non emergency number. We advertise this number a lot, or you can even use google!"

"You can't ring 999 and make enquiries about your car insurance."

"Someone has phoned 999 and spoken to us, the police, to ask what the NHS 111 number is..."

"If you can't find a toilet, please don’t call 999."

The contact centre said on Twitter: "In our latest spotlight on #Not999, we’ll be releasing clips weekly to showcase some of the inappropriate reasons that people have chosen to ring 999.

"On average, we get 120 inappropriate calls a day. One is too many."

Genuine 999 emergencies

Cardiac arrest, loss of consciousness, confused state, fits that aren’t stopping, chest pain, breathing difficulties, severe bleeding, severe allergic reactions, burns and scalds, suspected stroke, suspected heart attack, fall from height, serious head injury, stabbing, shooting and serious road traffic incidents.