Hoax calls to Redbridge fire brigade fall by 78 per cent in a decade

The London Fire Brigade [LFB] is reporting success in reducing the number of hoax calls in Redbridge based on figures released on Monday.

The number of fake calls to the borough’s fire service has fallen by 78 per cent in a decade.

Fire crews attended 252 “malicious” 999 calls in Redbridge in 2001 but the number was down to 55 last year.

Measures taken to combat hoax calls include training 999 control officers to challenge callers they suspect of prank calls and working with mobile phone operators.

Repeated hoax calls lead to around 100 mobile phones being cut off each year, according to the LFB.

Steve Brown, the brigade’s borough commander for Redbridge, said: “Hoax calls put lives at risk, are a waste of our firefighters valuable time and a drain on the Brigade’s resources.

“Every time our crews are sent out to investigate a prank call they are unavailable to attend genuine, potentially life threatening emergencies in the borough.

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“We’re not complacent and will continue to work to drive down the number of calls like this that we receive.”

The figures across London fell from 12,898 in 2001 to 2,152 in 2011.