OWENSBORO, Ky. (WFIE) - Dispatchers in Owensboro says they are receiving too many non-emergency 911 calls.
The number of calls each dispatch center receives varies, but according to Owensboro-Daviess County 911 Director Paul Nave, one in 10 calls is not for emergencies.
He says those calls can clog the system.
“In 1968, when 911 was established it was a national number for emergencies," said Nave. “And since then, it’s developed into more than just emergencies where people think they can call 911 for stuff that’s not an emergency."
Nave says people regularly call 911 to ask when their power will be turned back on.
“They call 911 telling us that the power is out in their facility at their house and they want us to call a local power company to let them know. And that’s just not something that we can do."
Nave says these types of calls can interfere with actual emergencies such as a house fire or a heart attack in progress call.
“We need to focus our attention for emergencies and get people to help when they need it,” said Nave.
The 911 director says those experiencing a situation that needs emergency attention should dial 911. If it’s not an emergency, you’re asked to call central dispatch at 270-687-8888.