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Public urged to use 999 responsibly after series of coronavirus calls following lockdown announcement

North Wales Police have urged members of the public to keep 999 free for emergencies after receiving a series of coronavirus related calls.

The calls came after Prime Minister Boris Johnson outlined strict new measures to tackle the spread of COVID-19 last night, including a ban on public gatherings of more than two people.

Examples of the type of calls the police force received are as follows:

  • “I’ve got an MOT for my car today, can I still go?”
  • “I’m in the process of moving house, am I allowed to continue?”
  • “My daughter is in University and I need to go and get her, can I go?”

In a post on Facebook, the police force said: “These are the type of calls we have received following the Prime Minister’s announcement last night, and we understand that people are concerned.

“However these calls are putting additional pressure on our control room.”

The UK Government advises that people should only leave their homes in the following circumstances.

  • Shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
  • One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household.
  • Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
  • Travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home.

The full guidance on staying at home can be found here.

In the meantime, police have told people to either use their online web chat or e-mail for non-urgent matters.

They have also reiterated that they should keep the 999 line free for emergencies only

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