Called 999 by mistake? Stay online, tell us you're fine
Main article content
Since the start of 2022 until the end of November, 25.83% of our 999 calls have been abandoned or silent. That is 15,045 calls.
Some of these will have been a genuine cry for help and others will have been an accident. Many smart phones allow for emergency 999 call access even when the screen is locked and most of us know how easy it is to pocket dial in error.
If you have called 999 by accident, please don’t hang up. Stay on the line and let us know you are fine.
It takes up a considerable amount of an operator’s time to check back on an abandoned call. Time. That time could be spent dealing with genuine emergencies.
Should you have called 999 but are afraid or unable to speak openly and are in an emergency situation, make yourself hear and let the 999 operator know your call is genuine.
It is always best to speak with the operator if you can – even if it is in a whisper. You may be asked to cough or tap keys on your phone to answer questions. If you are using a mobile phone and stay silent the call will be transferred to the police Silent Solution system.
This system is used to filter out any accidental or hoax calls and you will be asked to press 55 to be put through to your local police force. You will need to listen carefully to the call handler
The Silent Solution is only used for calls from mobile phones as it is less likely that a 999 call will be made from a landline. You can find out what to do in an emergency where you cannot speak to the operator by following this link: