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Be responsible when contacting police during adverse weather

28 Feb 2018

With the adverse weather conditions hitting the region overnight, and expecting to continue into the next two days, we are reminding people to be responsible when contacting us.

Chief Inspector Rachael Glendenning from our Force Contact Centre (FCC) said: “When severe weather hits there are additional pressures on the emergency services, so it is important to ensure that you use the emergency 999 number and 101 non-emergency number responsibly. 

“When snow came our way in December last year, we received more than 450 extra calls in to our control room one day and not all of them were relevant.

“Using 999 or 101 for something that is not a policing matter ties up our call handlers, and may delay getting help to those who are in real need of police assistance.

“There are other agencies and organisations that you should go to for travel advice such as Highways England for the latest information on gritting and travel disruption.”

Always dial 999 if:

  • Someone is injured, being threatened or is in danger.
  • There is a risk of injury to someone or a risk of serious damage to property.
  • A crime is in progress or you suspect a crime is in progress.
  • There is a serious incident which needs immediate police attendance.
  • Someone suspected of a crime is nearby.

When there is no immediate threat to life or property please make use of our online reporting tool.”

Examples of when you should contact us online, or call 101 include:

  • If you want to give information about a crime that is not currently in progress.
  • To contact a local police officer, such as someone from your Safer Neighbourhood team.
  • If your property has been stolen or damaged but it is not a crime in progress.
  • If you suspect drug dealing or use in your area.

To stay safe during the extreme weather we’re issuing the following advice: 

  • Avoid non-essential journeys and only drive in heavy snow or icy conditions if you really have to.
  • At evening and morning peak commuting times employers and individuals should considering staggering their journeys.
  • If you have to travel you should reduce speeds, allow extra time for your journey and leave a greater distance between you and the car in front.
  • Motorists should ensure windows and lights are clean and free from snow or ice cover before they set off.
  • You should ensure that you have warm weather proof clothing with you, as well as food and drink and, ideally, a shovel and torch.

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