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Corporate posters.

The Joys of modern Policing. Found this over here, an interesting Photo taken outside New Scotland Yard.    What next? “You are being raped… ring 999 / You have been raped… ring  0300 123 1212 ”. I am sure there are very good reasons for this system, but if you’re going to use a different number, how about using a memorable one?

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12 Responses

  1. I agree 100% – in fact, I’m a little annoyed as I was going to post about this exact thing.

    Ah well, it just shows you’re quicker than I am.

    Incidentally, all the nicks in my division now have this sign up.

  2. Exactly.

    I seem to recall reading about an idea like this about 10 years ago. The number was going to be 888. Very logical, very memorable.

    It’s a shame the Gov’t a) took so long to do it b) let the best number be scooped by an online gambling company.

    It’s entirely down to the bureaucratic mindset that they then came up with a non-memorable number (which varies from county to county) and expected people to memorise it.

    It’s a good idea, implemented badly.

  3. All well and good if you know what force (sorry, service) area you are in and their phone number. Why not have a national 888 or 333 phone number for non-emergencies?

  4. News report 1
    101 – new non-emergency number now live.
    The majority of people know that 999 is for emergencies. But did you know that currently up to 70% of 999 calls do not require an emergency response? From today people living in *** can call 101 to report all kinds of non-emergency and anti-social behaviour issues.
    The new Single Non-Emergency Number provides easy access to safety advice, information and the ability to report things you believe require action whilst freeing up the 999 services for real emergencies. The County Council, with its accredited community safety officers, is working closely with the police to improve the delivery of these non-emergency services and help gain information on community issues.

    News report 2
    Emergency calls to police in the North East have increased despite the introduction of a new number designed to reduce pressure on the 999 system.
    *** Police piloted the 101 number in July to deal with less-urgent problems such as anti-social behaviour or noise complaints.
    But in the second half of 2006 there were 11,000 more calls to the 999 system compared to the previous year.

    News report 3
    A new phone number has been introduced by the Metropolitan Police for callers to use in non-emergency situations.
    Police hope the number – 0300 1231212 – will make it easier for Londoners to contact them and reduce the number of inappropriate 999 calls. (or harder to contact them so they get less crap calls)

  5. Even historically, they managed to make things harder for people in urgent situations.

    Before touch-button telephones, people in a desperate need of assistance had to dial the LONGEST number by inserting the finger into the number 9 hole and running it right around the dial…. three times. How much easier and quicker would 111 have been?

  6. Good point. I think there should be a simple non-emergency number.

  7. Area Trace………..sorry about that. There are some good posters about. I don’t know who dreams them up. Watch this space.

  8. @Lesley

    My understanding of the origins of the 999 number was that it was the easiest system to implement on the dial phones which also meant it was a free call.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/999_(emergency_telephone_number)

  9. Lesley – this was the only way to have a free number in the old days! Is it beyond belief for people to LOOK UP the control room/non-emergency number in the phone book/online? Incidentally, if that poster is up in Surrey it’s false advertising as they refuse to attend burglar alarm calls unless you are prepared to enter the property and see if there are “shifty looking people inside” – er, no.

  10. Lesley – WHY “999”? – ‘111’ was a frequent possibility for random signals from wires touching in high winds, &c

    For non-local calls you had to ‘dial-0 for operator’ anyway. That was easy, even in the dark, as you felt for the little raised stop next to it. For ‘9’ you just put fingers in the two holes.

  11. Lesley, there was a good reason for 999.
    http://www.fire.org.uk/advice/999history.htm
    Also, if you think back to dial phones, 999 is easy to find in the dark due to its place on the dial one hole away from the bar – the only one easier to find, but longer to dial, would have been 000.

  12. Any interesting enlightenment on 911? I might as well get an education while I’m here :)

    Neighbour is being annoying – call 999
    Neighbour has been forgiven – turn mobile phone off, avoid police

    true?

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