Woman calls 999 for advice about storing eggs in fridge

East Midlands Ambulance Service releases weirdest and most inappropriate calls they have received

Caroline Mortimer
Thursday 25 January 2018 00:35 GMT
Woman calls 999 to get advice on broken eggs in her fridge

A woman who rang 999 about broken eggs is just one of the time wasters East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) said it has had to deal with during the past six months.

The service has released some of the bizarre and inappropriate calls it has received as part of its campaign to raise public awareness about what the emergency line should be used for.

In an audio recording of the 999 call, the handler is heard repeatedly asking if the patient is breathing. The unidentified woman replies that she is fine and that she just needed some advice.

She then asked: “I’ve got a box of eggs in the fridge. One of them was cracked so I move the eggs into the lid of the box and the box has been open in the fridge overnight.

“Can you keep a box of eggs open in the fridge?”

When told 999 was not the appropriate place to call, she demanded: “Well who can we ring?”

EMAS said that of the 2,500 emergency calls it receives every day, it also had to deal with requests about a dead fox, someone wanting them to make breakfast and even someone who called 999 in a GP’s surgery because they did not want to wait 30 minutes for an appointment.

Others have reported that a person was pouring milk all over their body as part of an art installation and another reported that someone else had stolen their drinking glass.

Simon Tomlinson, general manager for the service’s emergency operations centres, stressed people should only call 999 in a genuine emergency.

“When you call 999 because someone is unconscious, not breathing, having chest pains or has the symptoms of a stroke, you are making the right call,” he said. “Our emergency call handlers are trained to deliver life-saving instructions over the phone and we will get help to you as quickly as possible.

“Every 999 call is assessed so that the right help is provided to the right people as quickly as possible.

“You could receive the right treatment for you more quickly by contacting an alternative NHS service, such as your local pharmacy or NHS111, particularly if your call is not a serious emergency.

“Please help us to make sure we can reach the people who need us the most.”

He said every moment the call handlers spend on inappropriate calls was another moment they were unable to help someone in need.

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