An emergency is defined as ‘a sudden, urgent, usually unexpected occurrence requiring immediate action’ or ‘an unforeseen or sudden occurrence, epsecially of a danger demanding immediate remedy or action‘ (ref: dictionary.reference.com). The number ‘9-1-1’ should be used exclusively for emergencies, and not for information purposes.
The Suffolk County Police Department (SCPD) has another number besides 9-1-1 that can be used for non-emergency purposes: 852-COPS (aka 852-2677). The non-emergency number is the one you should use when you do not need emergency police assistance.
Some examples of emergency situations include the following:
- Anything involving a physical injury that requires medical treatment at a hospital
- Anything involving physical violence and/or a weapon (guns, knives, tire irons, etc)
- Anything involving a threat of physical violence
- Motor vehicle accidents
- Anything which would require the response of the fire department, such as a fire, the smell of natural gas and/or smoke, a live wire sparking, a carbon monoxide detector going off, etc.
- Someone breaking and entering at home or business
- A missing person or child
- Anything involving someone acting in a suspicious manner
- Anything involving a person exhibiting suicidal or mentally questionable behavior
Some examples of non-emergency situations include:
- Noise disturbances such as loud music, fireworks, and barking dogs
- Internet scams, possible identity theft, or possible fraud.
- An assist to pick up belongings in which there are no orders of protection involved
- A cat ‘stuck’ in a tree
- Anything involving parking complaints
- Prior incidents (for clarity’s sake, consider ‘prior’ as ‘anything that happened more than half an hour ago’), such as a lost/stolen item, property damage, etc.
Please remember, the operator you are speaking to on the phone is not a police officer. We are not trained to answer questions or give advice regarding the law. If you have a question that we cannot answer, either we can transfer you to the public information department, the central records department, or your preferred police precinct.
For more information regarding the Suffolk County Police Department, please check their website at: http://apps.suffolkcountyny.gov/police/index.htm
Please note: Once again, a further disclaimer reminding you that this blog is based upon my opinions, and is neither condoned nor sanctioned by the SCPD.