A statement put out by the force says: ‘We are receiving a high number of 101 and 999 calls today.
‘If you are trying to contact us via 101 there may be a significant delay. We will answer your call as soon as we can. We want to ensure our 999 lines are clear for dealing with emergencies and situations where there is risk of serious harm.’
They have asked that 999 is only dialled in cases when there is a danger to life, a crime is happening at the time, there is a dangerous incident on a motorway, or concerns for someone’s safety.
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The police’s phone system had come in for criticism in recent years after teething problems caused delays in call answering. However it has been up and running for more than 18 months now.
A police spokeswoman said that the problem was purely the number of calls coming in, and not caused by any technical difficulties. She said police could not confirm whether any category of call received was seeing particularly high numbers.