What to do if you need to call 999 but can’t talk

If you need urgent help from the police but are too scared to speak there’s a way for you to still get help by calling 999.

 

When you call 999

All 999 calls go to call centres and are answered by BT operators. They’ll ask you which service you need. If you don’t request police, ambulance, or the fire brigade and the operator is concerned they’ll connect you to your local police control room call handlers.

 

If You Call 999 From a Mobile

It’s always best to speak to the operator if you can, even by whispering.

You may also be asked to cough or tap the keys on your phone in response to questions.

If making a sound would put you or someone else in danger and the BT operator can’t decide if you need an emergency service, they’ll transfer your call to the Silent Solution system.

The Silent Solution is a police system used to filter out large numbers of accidental or hoax 999 calls. It also helps people who are unable to speak, but who genuinely need police assistance.

You’ll hear an automated police message, which lasts for 20 seconds and begins with ‘you are through to the police’. It will ask you to press 55 to be put through to a police call handler. The BT operator will remain on the line and listen. If you press 55, they’ll transfer the call to your local police. If you don’t press 55, the call will be ended.

Pressing 55 does not allow police to track your location.

 

What Then?

When transferred to your local police force, the police call handler will attempt to communicate with you by asking simple yes or no questions. If you’re not able to speak, listen carefully to the questions and instructions from the call handler so they can assess your call and arrange help if needed.

 

If You Call 999 From a Landline

Because it’s less likely that 999 calls are made by accident from landlines, the Silent Solution system is not available.

If, when you call 999 you don’t speak, and the BT operator can’t decide whether you need an emergency service, then they’ll transfer your call to a police call handler.

If you replace the handset, the landline may remain connected for 45 seconds in case you pick it up again. If you pick up again during this 45 seconds and the BT operator is concerned for your safety, they’ll connect you to the police.

When 999 calls are made from landlines, information about where you’re calling from will be automatically available to the call handlers to help them to help you.

Hate crime: It’s not just offensive. It’s an offence.

People can be cruel to those who are different to them. It could be the way you dress, what you believe in, a disability, or the way you live your life.

Name calling, harassment, threats. In person or online. They might say, ‘It’s just a laugh’, but you don’t find it funny. In fact it can be more than just uncomfortable, it can be scary.

If you feel you’re being targeted for any of these reasons you can do something about it. If you’ve witnessed this sort of behaviour you can do something about it.

The police take hate crimes and hate incidents very seriously. If you’re worried try to talk to someone you trust – a parent, carer, teacher, or a friend.

By reporting a hate crime you can stop it from happening to someone else.

Here’s how to report hate crime:

Call the police on 101

Report it online – click here

Contact Crimestoppers confidentially on 0800 555111 or at www.crimestoppers-uk.org

In an emergency always call 999

Knives Cost Lives

Lancashire Police are supporting a week of action aimed at reducing knife crime. You may have heard lots from friends, and on social media about knives and knife crime across the country. There have been some high profile cases and lots on the news including the recent incident at Runshaw College.
Operation Sceptre, which runs from March 11th to 15th, is a national campaign targeting knife crime and those who carry knives.While Lancashire is not experiencing the same tragic levels of knife crime seen in other parts of the country, we are keen to stress that any incident involving a knife could have deadly consequences and destroy lives. While there is a focus on activity during this week, our commitment to taking knives off the streets will continue longer term and involve schools and colleges, health services and trading standards.
Knife bins are being used at police stations in Blackpool, Burnley, Preston, Morecambe, Fleetwood, Greenbank Blackburn, Chorley and Nelson, during the surrender where people can hand in any knives. There are also two permanent bins at Tanhouse and Digmoor Community Centres in Skelmersdale. Knives need to be safely wrapped in tape and newspaper before putting in the bins. If you have a knife and want to get rid of it please take this opportunity to dispose of it anonymously and safely.
Chief Supt Neil Ashton, joint Head of Crime at Lancashire Constabulary, said: “Too many families have been affected by knife crime and just one person being stabbed is one too many. The consequences of carrying and using a knife is devastating and potentially life-threatening.
“We would encourage anyone with information about knife crime in the area to contact police or independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 anonymously.”
Find out about Section 60 stop and searches here
There’s lots more on knife crime on Fearless – Crimestoppers young people’s website.

Forensic Science for the Future

Lancashire Forensic Science Academy is the first collaboration of its kind to be based within a constabulary headquarters. The combination of police forensic expertise and academic excellence within purpose built facilities is designed to create an optimum environment for training and professional development.

Forensics for the future

 

Communities Defeat Terrorism

If you’ve seen or heard something that could suggest a terrorist threat to the UK do not ignore it, report it.

You can help the police tackle terrorism and save lives by reporting suspicious behaviour and activity. If you see or hear something unusual or suspicious trust your instincts and ACT by reporting it, in confidence, at gov.uk/ACT.

Any piece of information could be important, it is better to be safe and report. Your actions could save lives.

Kayleigh’s Love Story

Kayleigh’s Love Story is a film about the last 13 days of the life of 15-year-old Kayleigh Haywood.

The schoolgirl was groomed on Facebook by Luke Harlow, a man she had never met, she thought she had found someone who loved her. But she had walked into a nightmare and was raped by Luke before being raped and murdered by his next door neighbour Stephen Beadman in October 2015.

Murders like this are very rare, but sadly grooming via Facebook by older men pretending to be younger men are not.

Luke was actively trying to groom several girls at the same time and sent 2,000 messages in a 24 hour period to lots of girls. Sadly Kayleigh believed his story and was lured to his home.

Please be aware of the dangers you face. If someone you don’t know is talking to you on line, check they really are who they claim, and don’t arrange to meet them. Your well-being is too precious for that.

Watch the film here, some viewers may find this content upsetting.

If you are worried about an online friendship or are worried for a friend or loved one, get help. Check out our E-Safety and Abuse sections for more or visit Nest Lancashire.

Safer Internet Day 2019

How are you going to get involved to make the internet a safer place for everyone? Find out more.

Grant is named Young Citizen of the Year

A Skelmersdale teenager has been named as the High Sheriff of Lancashire’s Young Citizen of the Year 2017.

Grant Walker, 18, topped a list of more than 65 young and inspiring people from across the county who have made a real difference in their community.

The announcement was made during a special award ceremony at Lancashire Police headquarters in Hutton on Thursday, March 23rd.

Grant was praised by judges for his work volunteering to help rebuild a community in the depths of Africa and transforming community gardens in Tanhouse, Skelmersdale, despite personal challenges he faced.


John Barnett, High Sheriff of Lancashire, said: “The Young Citizen of the Year Award promotes young people’s achievements, highlighting the valuable contribution they make to the communities in which they live.
“My wife Danielle and I were delighted with the number and variety of entrants for this year’s prize, but, following careful adjudication with the judging panel, we felt Grant was a worthy winner.
“With an extremely challenging childhood and difficulties Grant still gave up his personal time selflessly to help to re-build a community in Africa bringing happiness and life into a disabled community which needed it the most and leaving an imprint of his kindness and good will to help others across the world”
“These awards are designed to celebrate the fantastic work young people like Grant do every day.”

A panel of judges including the current High Sheriff, the Lancashire Partnership Against Crime (LANPAC); Joel Arber, Pro Vice-Chancellor from the University of Central Lancashire and the former High Sheriff Rodney Swarbrick, who initiated the award, also selected a second and third place.

Runner-up Megan Holmes, 12, from Penwortham, was congratulated for her the idea of the ‘hope bag’ which contains items such as hats, gloves, socks, toiletries and foil blankets to be handed out to homeless people living on the streets.

Megan came up with the idea whilst out Christmas shopping with her mum when she noticed numerous people who were spending a cold winter night on the streets of Preston.

In third place was Lewis Baxter, 18, from Blackburn who was recognised for his work in promoting awareness of mental health and understanding others after previously suffering with depression himself.

Chief Constable of Lancashire Constabulary Steve Finnigan said: “We are extremely proud of our continued involvement in the Young Citizen of the Year Award and I am delighted that we have been able to host the award ceremony here at our headquarters in Hutton.
“I have heard all about the wonderful nominations received and the great work that the entrants have done to support other people and communities – some local, some international –  that need it.
“I would like to personally congratulate the winner, Grant, along with the runners up Megan and Lewis for their outstanding, selfless contributions in helping others including disabled children in Africa, the homeless and those suffering with mental health issues.”

Joel Arber, Pro Vice-Chancellor from the University of Central Lancashire added: “It’s tremendous to see so many examples of selflessness, initiative, drive and bravery from young people across the county.
“It has been truly inspiring to learn of their achievements and the impact they’ve made on the people and communities around them.
“Grant is an extremely worthy Young Citizen of the Year who’s not only made a great contribution in his local community but has used his skills to make a real difference to people’s lives in Africa.”

Don’t use a phone at the wheel

From Wednesday 1 March 2017, changes to the law come into effect that mean drivers who are caught using a mobile at the wheel will receive six points on their licence and a £200 fine, doubling the previous punishment.

This means that for those of you who are new drivers, if you are caught just once using your mobile phone whilst you are driving, so that’s within two years of passing your test, you could lose your licence. You will then have to re-apply for your provisional and re-take both the theory and practical tests.

Whether it’s looking at a text or a new social media post, streaming a video behind the wheel, checking emails or making a phone call, all of these activities are dangerous. Research shows that your four times more likely to crash if you use your phone and drive and your reaction time is 50% slower.

For those who aren’t able to drive yet, even as a passenger you can help to keep our roads safe. Don’t distract the driver with a mobile phone, a momentary lapse in concentration could cause a crash. And why not tell your friends, siblings, parents and family members about the tougher new penalties and encourage them to stay safe by not using a phone behind the wheel.

The message is clear and simple – don’t use you mobile phone when driving.

Hundreds of Apprenticeships up for Grabs

Get those CVs at the ready as the countdown begins to Lancashire’s largest ever Apprenticeship Expo on Tuesday 14th March at Preston Guild Hall.

The event is ideal for school leavers, young people and adults who will have the chance to meet face-to-face with some of Lancashire’s biggest and best employers to discuss the Apprenticeships and job opportunities on offer.

Around 50 businesses will be there between 12pm and 7pm with confirmed attendees including: BAE Systems, Leyland Trucks, NHS, BAXI, United Utilities, Harrison Drury, Sika and KPMG.

Amongst the many Apprenticeships on offer include jobs in construction, business, engineering and healthcare.

Jobseekers are encouraged to come armed with their CV to take advantage of this one-of-a-kind opportunity.

The event is being run in partnership with Preston’s College, University of Central Lancashire, Lancashire Constabulary and Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.

Andrew Richardson, lead organiser of the event, said: “This is a great chance for young people and businesses to come together and discuss job opportunities available across the county.

“The Expo gives a platform to find the right talent and we know that some employers could potentially interview candidates on the day.”

Entry to the jobs fair is free and more information can be found at www.appexpo.co.uk including a full list of exhibitors.

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