Don't call 911 to find out what time it is, OK?


  • Shutterstock/Tanya Shaw
Today, the Colorado Springs Police Department released recordings of the two best things to cross my desk all day: Recordings of emergency calls placed for less than ... pressing ... reasons. These are on top of a bevy of other contacts, says the department.

"This month alone [October 1 – 21] our Communications Center received 3,207 cell phone hang ups," reads a release. "This means, a person hung up before the call even rang into our center or before someone answered it. A call-taker is required to locate the number of that missed call and call the person back to see if there was an emergency. This is a time consuming effort.

"During this same time period, 1,786 unintended 'pocket' calls or open-line calls were received. Again, we have to call back every cell phone to determine if that person had an emergency or if it was an accidental call. ...

"Please, if you accidentally call 9-1-1, do not hang up. Stay on the line and let the operator know it was an accident." 

Call one.

Man: I didn't have an emergency, just my cell phone's all messed up. I didn't hang up because I was wondering, my cell phone doesn't give the time — could you tell me what time it is?

Operator: OK, sir it's ... six o'clock.

Man: It's six o'clock?

Operator: Yes sir.

Man: OK, thank you.

Operator: You're welcome

Man: OK, sorry about that, but my cell phone's all messed up and I lost my other one. Sorry about that.

Operator: No problem.

Call two.

The phone rings — it's a call-back.

Woman: Hello?

Operator: This is Colorado Springs 911, I received a call from this number.

Woman: Yes, it was me. I'm looking for a telephone number for Roundtable Pizza, off of Hancock and Fillmore.

Operator: OK, ma'am what's your address? And your phone number? And your name? OK Shirley, I'm gonna disconnect the line because you have no emergency, thank you.

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