BEING unable to get through to an adult website and a cat stuck up a tree are just two examples of inappropriate 999 calls received by North Wales Police.

Previous examples have included requests for taxis, a broken television set and a complaint about a cold take away meal.

The police are now highlighting their #DontTieUpTheLine message to help reduce unnecessary and inappropriate calls to the Joint Communications Centre in St Asaph.

Year to date figures show that NWP received almost 410,000 calls; including emergency and non-emergency calls.

Between December 15, 2016 and January 3, 2017, it received 4,407 ‘999’ calls and 14,984 ‘101’ calls.

Temporary superintendent Nick Evans said:

“Traditionally Christmas and New Year are among the busiest times of year for the police, and we are simply asking people to use the 999 system wisely over the festive period.

“Phoning 999, an emergency line, for trivial matters such as to report a cat stuck up a tree is a waste of resources, and could possibly prevent a genuine life or death emergency call being put through.”

There has also been a recent spate of children phoning 999 from payphones.

As well as the 101 non-emergency line North Wales Police offer a live webchat service for non-urgent matters, operational 24 hours a day, seven days a week. People can also email and use online reporting forms.

T/Sup Evans said: “We strive to answer all calls as quickly as possible, but due to the variable volume of calls, waiting times for the non-emergency line will vary. For example an RTC on a main trunk road will result in a particularly large call volume. The ‘999’ calls will always be prioritised but please do not be tempted to misuse the number for routine matters.

“We have powers to prosecute people for misusing the 999 system."

People found to be consistently making hoax calls could face prosecution.

The police advice is to only call 999 if a life is in danger, someone is being physically threatened, if you are witnessing a crime happening, or think the offenders are still nearby, if you witness or are involved in a serious road traffic collision where someone is badly injured, or other vehicles are causing an obstruction or a danger to other road users.

Otherwise, calls should be made to the non-emergency line, 101 (calls to 101 from landlines and mobiles cost 15p per call, no matter what time of day you call or how long you call lasts).

Between January 1, 2017 and December 13, 2017 North Wales Police received 79,148 emergency calls and 316,915 non-emergency calls

Between December, 20 and 27, 2017 North Wales Police received a total of 7,108 calls and during the same period in 2016 they received 6,708 calls in total.