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Plea not to contact police with coronavirus queries

Cambridgeshire Police force is urging people to visit national coronavirus website pages following a significant increase in queries to its control room.
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Photo: John Baker

It comes after the introduction of stricter restrictions on people’s movements nationally.

`Can I leave the house to feed my horse?’, ‘Can I go fishing?’ and ‘Can my daughter visit for dinner?’ are just a few of the calls our emergency call handlers, who are working on high-demand and low staffing levels, have answered in the past few days.

For information and advice on current government guidelines, along with advice on restrictions and social distancing, please visit

The 999 emergency and 101 non-emergency lines should only be used for policing matters.

Speaking about the problem on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire, Chief Constable Nick Dean said: ‘We are seeing a surge of calls to both our 999-emergency line and our 101 non-emergency line, with people trying to seek clarification on various issues related to the coronavirus movement restrictions.’

‘Whilst we appreciate people are calling us in good faith, our 999-emergency line and our 101 non-emergency line are for policing matters only.’

‘We are currently running on a reduced establishment, especially within our control centre, and I urge the public more than ever before to please only call us for policing related matters.’

The force has asked people looking for information and advice regarding current government guidelines to visit and to avoid calling 101 and 999.