Saturday, August 15, 2009

911 Ain't a Joke

If you listened to Public Enemy's hit, "911 is a Joke", you may be led to believe that the emergency phone service for the Police and Fire departments shouldn't be taken all that seriously. In fact, some treat the 911 number as an information service. Amy L. Edwards, a writer for the Orlando Sentinel, wrote a brief article in today's paper about this dilemma.

Some people call 911 for utterly mundane reasons, like ordering dinner. Edwards shares the transcript from an actual call to Orlando 911:
"Nine-one-one emergency. This is Josh. Your call is recorded."

"Um, yeah, can I get an order of the pork fried rice and ... do you guys have crab rangoons?

"This is the Police Department."

"Uh, OK. I'll also have an egg roll, too. Do you know how long it will be?"

"Ma'am, this is the police."

"OK. Do you know how long it will be?"

"This is the Police Department, ma'am."

"So you can't tell me how long it will be?"
Or how about the gentleman that called 911 while inquiring about the services of a lady of the night:
"The dispatcher pointed out that the caller had phoned the police. The caller said he knew that, adding that he figured police would know how to find prostitutes."
I guess I'll think twice before calling 911 next time my pizza delivery is late. You can read the whole article here.

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