Time-wasters calling 999 could face jail

Share this article

TIME-wasters who dial 999 with non-emergencies are being warned they could face prison by outraged ambulance bosses.

East Midland Ambulance Service, which covers the Daventry area, receives an emergency call every 45 seconds, but 72 per cent are unnecessary while some are simply bizarre.

A list of wacky calls included a person complaining of breathing difficulties, only for paramedics to arrive and find the patient was in fact a budgerigar.

Other calls made include someone who rang up because they fancied a sniff of oxygen and a man high on drugs who was convinced he had been bitten by a snake while watching a wildlife TV programme. Phone calls were also made by a parent whose child was hit in the face by a snowball and a man shocked by the price of his gas bill.

In response to the abuse of the emergency hotline, the ambulance service has said it will not hold back on taking those responsible to court.

Assistant director of operations, Richard Clayton, warned anyone who frequently called for a non-emergency will be monitored and potentially charged.

He said: “The examples we have released are a disgraceful misuse of public money and the expertise of our staff.

“Each call we attend ties that ambulance crew up and means they are unable to attend any real emergency in the area.”