Think before dialling 999

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  • Think before dialling 999
  • Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    I trust you all on here with more common sense than these people but thought I’d post it up anyway.

    We’re stretched already and just about to hit the busiest period of the year so keep it in mind.

    [video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MRl6v7utExc[/video]

    Bravo.

    Thanks for being out there, to you and all your colleagues.

    jon1973
    Member

    I had to dial 999 for the first time in my life a few weeks back when I witnessed a couple of blokes robbing a bank.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    I reckon that was justified.

    samuri
    Member

    Seconded. Thanks guys. You rock.

    I agree.

    I agree more than most can think. Waiting ages due to it being ‘Friday night’ is not good….

    jon1973
    Member

    are you injured?

    no, but I don’t have any credit on my phone

    Jesus H Christ….are people really that dim…

    b r
    Member

    Surely the command guys manage to weed out the wasters?

    Premier Icon Pook
    Subscriber

    Dialling 999 is (and probably should be for the caller) a terrifying experience.

    I say that, having called it three times. Twice for big fires to get the brigade out asap – I was terrified for the people in the fire and wanted the folks on the line to understand my clear worry without thinking I was being dramatic, and the third, when a colleague was fitting on the stairs at work and I didn’t trust our first aiders.

    The guys on the phone were brilliant. Bravo.

    jon1973
    Member

    Surely the command guys manage to weed out the wasters?

    Not sure, one guy in that video said he’d been stabbed, but it turns out he’d put a staple in his finger. If people lie to get the services out, then what can you do? You have to assume they’re being genuine.

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
    Subscriber

    Hear hear. Thanks for being there guys and gals of the emergency services.

    I’ve dialled 999 twice in my life.

    Once when one of the neighbours set fire to another neighbours fence, tree and shed at 1 in the morning.
    And once when pissed neighbours husband fell down the stairs, was bleeding from nose and ears and lying in a very contorted fashion in the hallway.

    Both times the response was quick, professional and not without a certain ‘british’ humour when the fella from the fire service told me to put my hose away as he had a much bigger one!

    dr_death
    Member

    To be fair though Drac, that drunk fella was right. It wouldn’t have taken the crew long to take them home.

    😉

    GaryLake
    Member

    If in doubt ring 101, they’ll put you straight through if 999 would have been warranted anyway…

    samuri
    Member

    If in doubt, carry out the following series of checks.

    1. Is someone going to die?
    2. Is someone going to experience severe difficulty in their lives from this point onwards if professionals don’t get to them soon?
    3. Is someone about to, or is currently committing a very serious crime?
    4. Is some severe damage to people or personal property about to take place?

    No? It’s not an emergency.

    sambob
    Member

    Agreed, some of the stuff I hear about is beyond belief. On the other hand though, some end up not calling an ambulance when they really need it, which can be worse than calling when it’s not strictly necessary. Although I’m sure you’re aware of that Drac.
    EDIT: Never called 999, but have used the SOS button on a SPOT tracker, very odd experience that…

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Surely the command guys manage to weed out the wasters?

    People learn the keywords to use to get a response.

    If in doubt ring 101, they’ll put you straight through if 999 would have been warranted anyway…

    That’s not nationwide and well I’ll leave it at that.

    To be fair though Drac, that drunk fella was right. It wouldn’t have taken the crew long to take them home.

    I can bring them to see you, I bet you’ll thank us.

    brakes
    Member

    No? It’s not an emergency.

    are those official checks?

    samuri
    Member

    No, but they are sensible checks.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Oops Gary is talking about the Police not the 111 service.

    Samuri – Where would a sportsman with a broken leg come under those four things?

    Because that’s what I last phoned an ambulance for and it was there sharpish.

    See – I was for getting him splinted up, given a set of crutches, fired into a car and taken to a&e. Dr and other physio asked for an ambulance. Interesting one though.

    project
    Member

    Bit of a reminder please sign in and say thanks

    http://singletrackworld.com/forum/topic/christmas-thank-you-to-the-emergency-services-over-christmas-page

    oh and if you do need to call paramedics or fire out, ask thenm which station theyre from, and deliver a tin of biscuits a few days latter, makes it worthwhile for them, as there is not a lot of them unlike the police, where the biscuits may never get to the right staff.

    Premier Icon sweaman2
    Subscriber

    As an aside.. in Canada (well Alberta at least) health care is mainly free but calling an ambulance costs you $180+ in billing. You can then claim it back off insurance but I’d love to see some of those jokers claim.

    Not always thought it made sense but seeing that footage made me wonder….

    Edit: Should add it isn’t always the caller that gets billed. When I was unconscious in the middle of the road someone else kindly called the ambulance but I got the bill a few weeks later (which was then claimed back as a genuine emergency).

    GaryLake
    Member

    I have phoned 999 once before though, aged 28 and genuinely convinced I was having a heart attack. The scary part was leaving it so long because it seemed too ridiculous. Was actually pericarditis in the end, spent 3 nights on a ward Tramadolled up and a further 3 months with bad PVF… not a good time in my life in all honesty.

    Felt bad for the guy in the bed next to me who looked like he could be the heart attack sort (right age and lifestyle) but ended up having bad indigestion.

    boblo
    Member

    sambob – Member
    EDIT: Never called 999, but have used the SOS button on a SPOT tracker, very odd experience that…

    Ooo, I’ve got a SPOT. What happened, what happened?

    restless
    Member

    I used to be a 999 control room operator for the police and the amount of ridiculous non emergency calls I used to deal with was ridiculous in itself.

    Also the amount of people who dial 999 because its free and they have no credit on their phone to call another number was infuriating.

    samuri
    Member

    Samuri – Where would a sportsman with a broken leg come under those four things?

    Because that’s what I last phoned an ambulance for and it was there sharpish.

    2 but I bet he could crawl. How far away was the hospital? If he got there, say in someone’s car, would the outcome have been much different?

    It’s only a broken leg, I drove home from the skate park and then took my son to football practice the next morning where I finally passed out with the pain before finally heading to the hospital with my broken leg.

    I called 999 for a prisoner once who’d bashed his head after falling out of bed while off his head on some illegal substance. The paramedic was the only one on duty that night covering from Wetherby to Skipton & surrounding areas. One of three ambulances on call for the same area came to take the poor lad to hospital.
    Hat’s off to our short staffed, overworked paramedics & amby crews!

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Subscriber

    people should be fined if they dial 999 and it is something trival they are doing it for. It’s pretty clear cut when you should dial.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    See – I was for getting him splinted up, given a set of crutches, fired into a car and taken to a&e. Dr and other physio asked for an ambulance. Interesting one though.

    😯

    sambob
    Member

    On our Gold D of E expedition in the Lakes, in thick fog and sideways rain. Came across another group from my school, one lad had slipped and smacked his head on a rock, gave himself concussion. That group had to stop, clearly, which then meant one girl got mild hypothermia. The SPOT tracker sends a signal to their base, who then contact MR. By that point, school leaders were present so the helicopter wasn’t sent, but ground MR attended to help get them back down Mosedale to the road. Was all pretty interesting, not that we hung around for long once we’d done what we could, it was grim. Best if you never need to press it though.

    samuri
    Member

    Just think how many, far more sustainably focused species live on the planet than humans that would live if we all died. It’d be great. All these animals getting on with their lives without **** the planet up, brilliant!

    poly
    Member

    Drac, whilst I understand why you posted that I think you are predominantly (if not totally) preaching to the choir here [metaphorically before it starts a religious debate]. The downside is that when we send out these ‘don’t waste our time’ messages to the ‘good’ people we plant a little seed of doubt. Should a broken arm in the middle of nowhere merit a call, or perhaps I should try and drive with my one good arm – I’ll probably make it? Should I call for the “drunk” I find in the street? or perhaps he’s hypo or will not wake up in the morning! Should my wife’s 87 yr old grandmother call when her brother “has a funny turn” (which turned out to be a stroke) or should she call her son-in-law who is 25 minutes away and ask him to pop over later on to give him a lift to the doctor if he is not feeling any better? Or the normally healthy 34 yr old male taking antibiotics for a chest infection who is struggling to breathe and calls NHS24 rather than 999 and then waits for the doctor to come out (he was dead within 24 hrs). Should I call the police about the obstruction in lane 3 of the motorway? Should I call the police about the man lurking in next door’s back garden at night? Or the kids ‘tagging’ the bus shelter across the road? Or when the neighbour’s teenager is taking potshots at the cat with his air gun? Or perhaps Mr X next door has just come home from the pub and is throwing stuff at the missus again?

    The “system” relies on members of the public calling in incidents. Some of those incidents might not be the most serious, might not technically be emergencies, or might have a perfectly sensible alternative way to resolve it – but I think generally nobody objects to those being dialled in as 999. The issue is the ‘I need to get home’ ‘I’ve got no credit’ brigade, or those who know the magic keywords to use … But they aren’t likely to be on here and aren’t likely to pay any attention anyway. I’m not sure “education” is likely to be effective at anything other than putting off some genuine calls.

    I’d like to see time wasters prosecuted, just as we would with hoax callers. I realise that is difficult and ties up resources but if the consequences of totally taking the piss are nil then you will continue to get that.

    STATO
    Member

    2. Is someone going to experience severe difficulty in their lives from this point onwards if professionals don’t get to them soon?

    It’s only a broken leg, I drove home from the skate park and then took my son to football practice the next morning where I finally passed out with the pain before finally heading to the hospital with my broken leg.

    So you put your son at risk and other road users (you could have passed out in pain while driving) because essentially you want to be seen as a hard-man, rather than a softy whimp?

    samuri
    Member

    As previously stated, many people understand the key words to use. ‘i’ve been stabbed’, ‘I need urgent assistance’, ‘come here immediately’. They know they’re screwing the system for their own selfish, immediate needs.

    Those are the people who need sorting out, not the debaters on where a funny turn is urgent or not, that’s for the professionals to work out.

    What this says to me, is that so many people live their entire lives without ever experiencing a serious situation. Probably a good thing and it does say a lot about out society that we can produce such a safe environment, but it also makes me a little sad that we’ve created such a risk averse world that getting a staple in your finger is considered a big problem.

    samuri
    Member

    So you put your son at risk and other road users (you could have passed out in pain while driving) because essentially you want to be seen as a hard-man, rather than a softy whimp?

    I didn’t tell anyone so no hard man boasting going on. It was only when a door banged into it that I passed out, before that I just thought I’d sprained it. Extremely painful, yes, emergency, no.

    I’m all for the hagification of the emergency services. Ambilans. Polis. Fire guys. You’re all frickin awesome.

    Drac – simple midshaft tibia fracture. No gross deformity, tolerating pain well and pulses were good in all the relevant places.

    Interesting in that as I said, it’s not something i’d have considered getting an ambulance for before that day, but if the same scenario comes around again I’ll ask for an ambulance.

    ChrisE
    Member

    Had not the best experiance once with 999.

    At a remote farm, 900m off the road, 4 miles from a town, woman severs arm off just above the wrist. of course I call 999. Woman on the other end has list of pre-written questions. after what seemed like ages and she’s still asking me what seems like stupid questions, I have to say, look, I’m putting the phone down, you’ve told me an ambulance is on it’s way, the woman is now unconscious and loosing massive amount of blood, I’m trained in this (5 day work first aid and mountain first aid) so I’m going to elevate it, put a towel on it (the first thing I picked up)and pressure – bye……

    C

    poly
    Member

    samuri – Member
    As previously stated, many people understand the key words to use. ‘i’ve been stabbed’, ‘I need urgent assistance’, ‘come here immediately’. They know they’re screwing the system for their own selfish, immediate needs.

    Those are the people who need sorting out, not the debaters on where a funny turn is urgent or not, that’s for the professionals to work out.
    That’s my point though. I know the callers in all of the above situations and they all felt that dialling 999 would be wasting someone’s time (although some did) and it predates the 101 alternative. HOWEVER the people who want to screw the system aren’t going to be changed by a video, but the rest of us might think twice and make the wrong choice for fear of being labelled a time waster.

    wors
    Member

    See – I was for getting him splinted up, given a set of crutches, fired into a car and taken to a&e. Dr and other physio asked for an ambulance. Interesting one though.

    And to think about the amount of people on here that think first aid is a waste of time. 🙄

    simple midshaft tibia fracture. No gross deformity, tolerating pain well and pulses were good in all the relevant places.

    And there’s a clinically reasoned and justified decision why I probably wouldnt have gone for the ambulance option. People with more experience and more qualifications went for different options, neither are wrong.

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