Abu Dhabi Police receive five calls a minute in first seven months of year

But not all of the calls were for emergencies, according to Colonel Nasser Al Maskari, the police's director of operations

Abu Dhabi - April 24, 2008 - Emergency phone opperator, Muhsen Al Ameri, 25, in the control room of Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters. Lauren Lancaster / The National  *** Local Caption *** LL_ADPoliceHQ011.jpg
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Nearly 1.5 million calls were made to Abu Dhabi Police’s Command and Control Centre in the past seven months.

The emergency number 999 received 980,066 calls from Abu Dhabi, 415,330 from Al Ain and 80,986 from Al Dhafra, Abu Dhabi Police said.

The calls varied between traffic and criminal reports as well as inquiries from the public regarding travel directions, according to Colonel Nasser Al Maskari, the police's director of operations.

The centre also received calls from women asking for help after their vehicles had broken down.

Colonel Al Maskari said that the centre worked round-the-clock using a high-tech electronic system and an advanced database to receive urgent calls and deal with them accordingly.

"Police patrols would be dispatched to locations as soon as calls are received while simultaneously coordinating with authorities involved such as the Air Wing, Community Police, Quick Intervention Unit, Civil Defence, Traffic Patrols, Ambulance and Rescue, Crime Scene and other departments," said Col Al Maskari.

He called on the public to call only in emergency cases as non-urgent calls result in time being wasted along with efforts that could be directed to those who need help.

In the first seven months of this year, Abu Dhabi operations room received 1,476,382 emergency calls compared to 1,227,645 in the same period last year.

These included 185,341 reports of criminal activity and 171,328 concerned traffic violations.

Col Al Maskari said that Abu Dhabi Police was keen to reduce the response time by using the latest technologies and equipment.

"The operations room provides a system to communicate with people with special needs of all categories and to respond to all inquiries via the text message number 5999," he said.

"It organised 82 workshops in the last six months aiming at improving time management in the workplace."

The Police also recently launched a community initiative to honour people who reported emergencies.