NBC26 Special Report: You Paid For It
Dialing 911 is meant for emergencies only. But the Brown County dispatch center answers tens of thousands of bogus calls every year. Video by nbc26.comvideo
It sounds like a no-brainer. Don't call 911 unless it's an emergency. Well, turns out a lot of people are dialing 911 for reasons as innocent as asking for directions. But those kind of calls, takes dispatchers away from handling real emergencies. Ones where, lives may be at stake.
Pocket dials happen daily. Even more on Packers home games. These too have to be tracked down, and that takes time. And time is money.
On average, the Brown County 911 center answers more than 12,000 hang-ups or pocket dials a year. That costs taxpayers $33,000 just to have these calls answered. And by calling 911 without a real emergency, you never know who may be waiting, who desperately needs the help.
Another big reason for fake 911 calls, when children are given old cell phones to play with. Dispatchers remind us, that as long as a cell phone can turn on, it can dial 911.