No butts about it: Why one Quebec police force wants pocket dialing to stop

Waterloo Regional Police are asking people to check their phones as its communications centre has recently seen a “significant increase in 911 accidental dials.”. Getty Images

Quebec City police receive so many accidental calls to 911 that it is reaching out to the public for assistance.

The police department, known as the SPVQ, made a plea to residents on social media Thursday to stop pocket or “butt-dialing” them.

Authorities say recent software updates for cellular phones may make it easier to make emergency calls and that the 911 service has been inundated with unintended calls as a result.

“Lately, these accidental calls represent about 39 per cent of total calls, or about 750 per day,” police said on social media.

Police ask residents to consider de-activating the Emergency SOS functions on their devices so as not to unintentionally bog down dispatchers.

“The consequences of these calls are numerous and have a real impact on the call response time for real emergencies,” the department said.

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Behind the scenes with 911 call takers & dispatchers

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