Mountmellick Garda station’s phone was ringing out, while Portlaoise station had “an impossible task” to answer four ringing phones.
Thus reported Community Forum rep Sheelagh Coyle after her attempts to get Sgt Ingrid Moore on the phone.
“I think that was unsatisfactory,” she told Inspector Aidan Farrelly at the recent Joint Policing Committee meeting.
“999 or 112 is the number to ring in an emergency. All I can do is apologise, if it’s an emergency use the number. She (Garda on reception in Portlaoise) is answering an emergency line too in that room,” he said.
He was asked later by the Leinster Express to clarify when 999 should be used.
“It could be reporting a theft, or if someone is about to commit a crime, people can use their common sense,” Insp Farrelly said.