BEING rejected from a nightclub; a connect call to the Queen; a dog escaping from a garden and being locked out of the house – all were emergency calls made to Cheshire Police in the past six months.
A Freedom of Information request by the Warrington Guardian has revealed the needless nature of some 999 calls made to police in the area.
We analysed a log of all calls taken on Christmas Day 2013, Saturday, March 8, and Easter Monday.
While many 999 reports were for genuine emergencies such as road accidents, domestic violence, bar fights and a missing person, others were more questionable.
Some calls appeared unsuitable even for the non-emergency 101 number, with car engine trouble among reports made.
On Christmas Day last year a man rang 999 at 1.36am to say his dog had run out of his back garden.
Hours later, a woman called to say she needed help finding her keys.
On Saturday, March 8, a drunk woman called police to say she had been refused entry to a club.
And on Easter Monday, emergency operators received a report that a woman was stuck in traffic and had run out of liquids for her two-year-old child.
Other calls were made by people with suspected mental health problems, and a few appeared to be genuine mistakes.
John Dwyer, Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, urged residents to use 999 calls appropriately.
He said: “I would like to take this opportunity to remind people only to call 999 in an emergency, for example if there is a danger to life, you feel threatened, a vulnerable person needs urgent attention or there’s a serious road traffic collision.
“101 is the number to use in a situation that is not an emergency.
“The Constabulary strives to help people in any way they can and sometimes offering support and advice is the most appropriate action to take.”
A Cheshire Police spokesman said many of the non-genuine calls they got could be linked to those with mental health problems and they were referred on to other agencies.
The added: “We do get a degree of calls and they are usually with good intention such as they have seen something happen but because the offender isn’t on the scene or there is a threat to life they are not an urgent response.
“We staff all calls that come in and we are able to move people across the force control centre to deal with differing demand.
“101 is working as an alternative to 999 and a lot of people are using it now.”