In the last 10 years technology has been revolutionised and people now live their lives and communicate in a very different way and this has been recognised by Merseyside Police.
As a result the force has this week introduced a new appointment system for non-urgent callers.
Chief Superintendent Ngaire Waine, head of the force Contact, Crime and Resolution department, explained: “On average we receive 2500 calls a day to Merseyside Police and between 1800 and 2000 of those calls are non-urgent and don’t require immediate police attendance.
“Currently we despatch patrols to those non-urgent calls when an officer is available, but this is not always convenient for the caller.
“This week we have introduced a new appointment system for non-urgent callers who require a visit from an officer. Instead of waiting for the first available patrol, we will work with the caller to arrange a time that is convenient to them, either at their home address, or their local police station.
“We are committed to ensuring that our communities are at the heart of everything we do and we are consistently looking at how we can change the way we work to ensure that we provide an efficient and effective service.
“We hope that the introduction of the new appointment system will make the caller’s experience of police contact more convenient and less stressful, by providing a time and location that is convenient to them and fits in with their work and family schedule.
"As well as the non-urgent 101 number, members of the public can report non urgent crimes in a number of other ways. We have a direct e-mail account (COMMCEN@merseyside.pnn.police.uk), or alternatively there is the possibility to report on line via the force website https://www.merseyside.police.uk/contact-us/report-crime-online/.
"A member of the Contact, Crime and Resolution department will access the e-mail and website crime reports and contact the caller to give advice, and where required arrange for an appointment with an officer.”
Chief Supt Waine, added: “Whilst we can do everything possible to try and make our systems more effective, I would like to take this opportunity to appeal to members of the public to help us make sure that when they call the police it is because they need us.
“There are still a lot of people out there who call the police in relation to incidents which do not require a police service. We receive calls about all sorts of issues from rat infestations to cats up trees and blocked drains, because people aren’t sure who they should contact. These types of calls can put extra pressure on our call handlers and could slow down their ability to respond to a caller who is in urgent need of a police response.
“If you’re not sure whether it is a police matter there is a nationally managed website and App (AskthePolice.com), which can point you in the right direction and give you advice.”
People are reminded 999 should only be used when –
- A crime is happening now
- Someone is injured
- You, or someone else, is in danger
- The person who has committed the offence is still there or is nearby
Examples of when you might call 101 –
- “My car has been stolen from my driveway”
- “My car was vandalised last night”
- “My house was burgled whilst I was on holiday”
Take a listen to a few of the calls Merseyside Police gets that do not need a police response:
999 Call – Wrong Food: https://youtu.be/0j173drYlv4
999 Call – Rat in Kitchen: https://youtu.be/78RFULW8ePE
999 Call – Lost Jacket: https://youtu.be/HkwAN_-QBHY
For more information or to report a crime online, visit https://www.merseyside.police.uk/contact-us/report-crime-online/
For more information about 999 or 101 visit https://www.merseyside.police.uk/contact-us/emergency-999/