Hello, 911? I need a BLT on rye.
You, as a rational person, probably would not call 911 to order a sandwich, but honestly, don't put it past the entire human race. People have weird reasons for doing things, and we guarantee you at least one 911 operator has fielded a phone call for a Jimmy John's delivery.
But that's not even the weirdest call they've gotten. Just you wait and see.
There's A Conspiracy In My HouseGiphy
I was a 111 operator in New Zealand and or system works a little different. When you call 111 an operator asks you "Fire, Ambulance or Police?" You tell them who you need and they transfer you through. I've had the following calls:
- The moon is too big
- Government spiders are in my ears again
- The neighbour has recorded me coughing and had been playing it back to me for 24 hours on high
- The people in my living room are watching coronation Street and I don't like it
- I can't turn my shower off
One of my dispatchers told me recently that someone called to say there were ducks in the Walmart parking lot. And they thought that was weird so they wanted us to know.
One recently was somehow actually dispatched to was that a homeless man was sitting in a park. Not "unconscious" or anything, just sitting. And someone thought I should check on him. He was fine thank you and wanted me to go away.
I was the dispatched, not the dispatcher. But:
- Neighbors sprinkler was getting water on the edge of her lawn.
- Neighbors boat was taller than the shared privacy fence.
- Hundreds of calls about disputes over gas station chicken.
- City employee was upset because she bought a chocolate bar from a gas station, put it in her pocket, and walked to work in 100° heat. It melted and the gas station refused to refund her.
- Children playing outside.
- Caller wants construction workers to stop using foul language.
- Neighbor left pumpkin seeds at callers door.
- Argument over green tea.
Way more, but my brain is tired.
Stubby Toe, Stubby Stubby Toe
This is my dad's story, and he was an EMT.
So, this lady calls in one day, and she says, she has, and you're not gonna believe this, but a paper cut, and she need help. They thought this was some insane paper cut, so they ditched a car crash on the freeway going through Sun City (this was in SoCal) and luckily, Riverside covered their backs out there, and they went to the lady's house. She was trying to teach her daughter how to treat a paper cut, and thought the first responders would just teach her how to do it. She got yelled at, cause people really did die in that crash out there in Sun City, and they went back to their real work. The next day, she calls in for a stubbed toe. They went over and yelled at her again, and she got taken to court and given the maximum fine for abusing the 911 emergency system. Thank god.
Quotes On Quotes
Homeless people existing ("I heard there is a city ordinance now that they cant sit on the sidewalk... I mean he isnt causing a problem and he can stay there, I just want an officer to tell him he has to stand... I'm just trying to be a good community member")
A black person standing on the sidewalk, talking on their phone "like they're waiting for an uber" (So do you think maybe that's what they're doing then? "I dont know I just think an officer should come talk to them"... it was 2pm, and we did not send)
Their power going out ("Well I couldn't figure out how to call the light company"... it's the first damn result on Google, and you Know they could Google the nearest Starbucks in about ten seconds)
An injured pigeon ("So you arent going to send an officer?")
Finding a wasps nest in their car's side mirror ("How am I supposed to get out?")
A neighbor leaving a piece of paper on their fence ("Theres nothing threatening on it but it means she had to walk up to my fence so she trespassed")
A neighbor letting their child stand within five feet of some apartment stairs. ("I just dont think she's watching him well enough"... meanwhile the neighbor in question is calling to say this creepy woman is filming her kids and harassing them)
Hearing fireworks on the 4th of July ("Well what if it catches something on fire??" Um, call us then ma'am)
A black person walking with a white child ("Obviously that child isnt hers!")
And so much more.
The Glitter Police
I work at a facilities dispatch center, and our university police have the ability to dispatch on our Facilities dispatch radio. Apparently someone called 911 to report glitter all over the floor (it was the week of graduation) and the police dispatcher audibly sighed while asking us over the radio to clean it up.
Mistrust In The Sawdust
I had a woman at a park call saying there were people at the playground in pilgrim clothes with kids she didn't think belonged to them. I asked if she meant a Mennonite family, and when she didn't know what that was I explained what Mennonites where. She got annoyed at me and said that maybe she had just seen too many lifetime movies but she just didn't think these kids belonged to these people and police needed to come check on them.
I finally sent police. Police went out there and did nothing. She called back and insisted that police return and come speak to her because these kids were in danger from the people in pilgrim clothes.
Not a dispatcher, but we've been having a recurring issue in my province where people always seem to call 911 to complain after an Amber Alert.
Amber Alert messages are sent out to all mobile devices & on radio / television in the case that a child is missing or abducted. People get woke up in the middle of the night, and think the rational response is to call 911.
To complain that they've been inconvenienced by a missing child.
Squawk Squawk Henny
My auntie works answering emergency calls for the Police on the UK, and we use 999. She had a call of a woman because a bird was squawking loudly in her back garden.
Take Your Libido And Ska-deed-oGiphy
Not a 911 operator, but an EMT. We have a "frequent flyer" who complains of back pain or chest pain just to go to the hospital to flirt with the nurses and techs. That ambulance is the busier truck of the bunch, and it's annoying knowing they're real sick people in my local whom could warrant the services much more.