OPP Concerned Over High Number Of False 9-1-1 Calls

Tecumseh OPP has released some staggering numbers when it comes to accidental or false 9-1-1 calls.

A review of calls between 2013 and 2017, revealed that local OPP on average, respond to 572 accidental 9-1-1 calls a year — that's nearly two false calls a day.

OPP Constable, Jim Root says the false calls result in a misuse of resources.

"These calls essentially tie up a call taker in our communications centre, a dispatcher and then ultimately two officers, because these calls require just that, a two officer attendance."

"Even if a call is made in error, police still have to go. We still have to basically attend, locate these people if we can and that's the problem sometimes, we can't always locate these dropped calls. We still have to attend, locate and make sure that there's not an actual emergency," says Root.

Root says the time to call 911 is for when there is an immediate risk to someone's life or property and then maybe to stop or report a crime in progress and other emergencies like fire and medical emergencies.

The OPP has launched the #KnowWhenToCall campaign to educate the public on unintentional calls.

They also continue to urge the public not to call 9-1-1 unless it's an emergency, and not to let children play with mobile phones or tablets.  The OPP also advises that callers should never use 9-1-1 for information on road conditions and closures.

 

— with files from AM800's Peter Langille