North Yorkshire Police one of slowest in country to answer 999 calls

North Yorkshire Police's control room.

North Yorkshire Police is one of the slowest forces in the country at answering 999 calls, new data has found.

Only 44 per cent of calls were answered within the target time of under ten seconds – the fourth worst response in the country.

It is the first time national statistics have been published showing how quickly police forces answer emergency calls.

Only one force — Avon and Somerset — managed to hit the target of 90 per cent of calls answered in under ten seconds.

The worst performing force was Humberside Police, with only two per cent of calls answered within the target time.

South Yorkshire Police answered 17 per cent of calls within the target, Durham Police 41 per cent, North Yorkshire Police 44 per cent and Gloucestershire Police 49 per cent.

In response to the publication of new league tables, North Yorkshire Police’s lead for contact management, Assistant Chief Constable Lindsey Butterfield, welcomed the release of the data

“Along with every other force in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, here in North Yorkshire we strive to answer 90% of 999 calls within ten seconds. Currently, we’re achieving that target 44% of the time.

“This falls below the standard that our communities deserve, and we are working hard to immediately increase that rate so people in need of our help get through to us quickly.”

Chief Con Butterfield said the force did not have sufficient staff to met the target.

“Whilst there are a number of factors which impact on the speed at which 999 calls are answered, we recognise that we are not staffed to meet our current elevated levels of demand and we are investing in a number of measures to make improvements and get calls answered quicker.

“This includes putting in place enhanced recruitment plans for more staff within our Force Control Room. We expect to have recruited 10 per cent above our establishment by September 2022. The additional 10 per cent allows for the levels of staff turnover that we experience.

“We have also established a pool of reserve staff to deal with administrative tasks on behalf of the call takers in the Force Control Room. The additional costs for these interim arrangements have been funded by North Yorkshire’s Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.

“The dedicated team of staff who handle our calls within our Force Control Room work incredibly hard, in a very challenging environment.

“We will be recruiting for our next intake very shortly so if you or someone you know is interested in joining the team, please keep an eye on the jobs section of our website or register your interest via our vacancies page.”


  1. Remind me, did the amount that we pay for the police just increase by the maximum amount allowed? When you pay the highest amount are you then going to get the best service? Doesn’t seem like it!

    • Linda – Surely you don’t believe the increase was used to improve things at the ‘Coal Face’.
      I don’t see anyone sat round in a collar and tie drinking tea or coffee, they are all upstairs!!!

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