Andrea Vance at Stuff reports:
Switching to an alternative three-digit non-emergency number could cut down on time-wasting hoax or abandoned calls, a review suggests.
About half of all 111 calls are “false” because of “pocket dialling” on mobile phones, children playing or pranks.
A review commissioned by the Government after two high-profile failures in the 111 system, in 2009 and 2010, floats the idea of changing the number to 112, which is less vulnerable to misdialling. However, this would be costly.
It also suggests allocating additional numbers for non-emergency calls; in some countries different numbers are used for police, fire and medical emergencies.
This has been talked about for years, is common sense and should be implemented. We’ve had over a decade of reviews.
Almost no one knows the number of their local police station, so 111 gets a fair number of non urgent calls. If there is a nationwide non urgent number for the Police such as 777, then that would lessen the load on the 111 system.