There are times in life when you may need police assistance. But when it's not an emergency, you should not call 911, and instead seek out the appropriate number to your local hospital, police, or fire station.
However, there are lots of times when you should not call the police for help at all — like when your windshield wipers stop working, for example.
Unfortunately, stupid and selfish people exist, and thus, so does this list.
TL;DR Below are ten actual reasons that Canadians called 9-1-1 in the past year of 2018. They are, without a doubt, the stupidest reasons to interrupt the important service of emergency response lines.
These real-life calls came from E-Comm, one of the biggest 9-1-1 call centres in British Columbia.
Representatives from the call centre took the time to remind Canadians that calls like the ones below can tie up a line that could otherwise be used to deal with real, life-or-death emergencies.
Someone actually called 9-1-1 to...
... complain about a local fast food restaurant that said it was open 24-hours-a-day, and it wasn't.
... find out what direction to change their clocks for daylight savings.
... complain that a store won’t take back shoes (because they weren't brought back in the original box).
... report a restaurant for not accepting a coupon.
... report a lost coat.
... complain about a gas station attendant putting the wrong type of gas in their car by accident.
... report that a rental car company gave them a different car than they reserved.
... find out where their car has been towed.
... figure out how to turn off the headlights on their car.
... because their windshield wipers stopped working.
Whenever someone calls 9-1-1, the call takers must "confirm the safety" of the caller before completing the call.
The number exists to save lives, not to make your life easier.
I can just imagine the misplaced outrage these people must have felt that they actually thought they had the right to call the police, let alone 9-1-1.
Let's hope next year people learn to take a deep breath and solve their own problems.