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Zoe Hardman & Anna Whitehouse 10pm - 1am
8 January 2019, 14:43 | Updated: 10 January 2019, 08:13
It's been revealed 255,000 999 calls made to Thames Valley Police every year aren't emergencies.
Approximately 80% of the 999 calls received by Thames Valley Police do not require an emergency response.
These calls range from crimes that have taken place earlier in the day, issues that are handled by other agencies, callers who have grown tired of waiting on 101 as well as wholly inappropriate calls.
Gavin MacMillan, Senior Delivery Manager for the Contact Centres, said:
“We are an emergency service and will always prioritise answering 999 calls
“999 is a quick way to get through to the police in an emergency, not a quick way to get through to us about anything. To a minority of people calling us it is viewed as being a more convenient option, a way of jumping the queue.
“The video we have created illustrates a very real issue, anyone using 999 inappropriately is delaying us in answering a genuine emergency call.
“I urge people to think before you dial. If it is a situation where anyone is in harm’s way or a crime in progress then it is absolutely the right thing to call 999.
“If it is not an emergency but it is a matter for police then please go online or call 101.”
The Thames Valley Police website allows all crimes and road traffic collisions to be reported online.