THE launch of a new police non-emergency number has been hailed as a success after 700 calls were made to it in its first week.
From Monday, July 4 members of the public were able to dial 101 as the new non-emergency number for the county.
The Hertfordshire Police Authority and the Force Communications Room (FCR) marked the end of the first week of use for the new number on Monday but are still promoting its use.
FCR manager Richard Wilde said: “This new number aims to improve the non-emergency service we currently offer as it is easier to remember.
“From early next year it will possible to ring this same number wherever you are in England and Wales to reach your local force’s non-emergency service.
“Since 101 went live at Hertfordshire Constabulary last week, we have already seen more than 700 calls made to the new number, and this number is steadily rising.
“This is great news and in time it will hopefully free up the 999 service for emergency calls.
“Previously people had phoned 999 because of the cost of the 0845 number, which for many cost them considerably more to ring, or because they couldn’t remember the full number.”
The previous 0845 number will continue to run for around a year to ensure a smooth transition.
Calls to the new 101 number are 15p for the duration of a call, from either a landline or a mobile.
A textphone service on 18001 101 is still available for the deaf, hard of hearing or speech impaired.
Hertfordshire Police Authority Chair David Lloyd said: “The introduction of the 101 non-emergency number means that when anyone has a reason to make contact with the police they will always know the number to use.
“This project proves that it is not necessary to spend lots of extra money making improvements to services.”