From Monday 12 December 2011, local residents will be able to call 101 for non-emergency issues such as minor traffic collisions, criminal damage or if they want to speak to a local neighbourhood officer or PCSO about an issue affecting their community.
101 is being introduced in the North Yorkshire, Cleveland, Cumbria, Durham and Northumbria force areas as part of a national roll-out designed to make it easier for people to contact the police.
Deputy Chief Constable Tim Madgwick (pictured), of North Yorkshire Police, said:
101 is a memorable number which will make it easier for people to report non-emergency crime and anti-social behaviour, as well as contacting the local Safer Neighbourhood Team.
It is designed to make the police even more accessible to our communities while at the same time reducing pressure on the 999 system, meaning every caller receives the best possible service.
The new number will replace current non-emergency numbers – in North Yorkshire Police’s case 0845 60 60 24 7 – but calls will still be answered in the same Force Control Room in York by the same police personnel.
When calling 101, the system will determine the caller’s location and play a recorded message announcing the police force they’re being connected to. If they are on a boundary between two or more forces, the recorded message will give them a choice of which force to be connected to.
101 also offers improved value, with each call costing 15p no matter what time of day it is or how long the call lasts. This means everyone calling the police will know exactly how much a call will cost them, whether they’re calling from a landline or a mobile phone.
People should continue to call 999 in an emergency – when a crime is in progress, there is danger to life or violence is being used or threatened.
Local councils should still be contacted on their existing phone numbers for issues such as dog fouling or litter.
For more information about 101, please go to www.police.uk/101