Appeal to “think before you dial 999” after woman phoned Northamptonshire Police because she didn’t have any mobile phone credit

A call handler in Northamptonshire Police's Force Control Room
A call handler in Northamptonshire Police's Force Control Room

A 999 call from a woman who contacted police because she had no mobile phone credit has been highlighted as one of the inappropriate uses of Northamptonshire Police’s emergency telephone number.

Throughout Monday, the county’s police force has been tweeting out the details of the wide variety of calls the control room, based in Wootton Hall, receives from members of the public.

Among the incidents tweeted this morning included a call from a woman who had rung police because she had no credit on her phone.

Other inappropriate calls included someone who phoned 999 to say she had been receiving morse code down her phone and another person who rang to report a the theft of a dog that happened a month ago.

Chief Inspector Fay Tennet, who manages the control room, said people needed to make sure they only called the 999 number if it is an emergency.

She said: “People should use the 101 number to report crimes that are historic. The 999 call is for what is happening now.

“We have calls from people who lost their dog a week ago or have rung 999 because they have run out of phone credit.

“People need to think about their call and decidedif they need an officer to attend in a police car using blues and twos.

“We want to make sure we give every incident the appropriate response.”

Ms Tennet said there were 150 staff in the control room, working different shifts over a 24 hour period, and they took an average of 1,000 phone calls a day.

The busiest part of the day was from 2pm to midnight and the busiest days of the week were Friday or Saturday.