City of Griffin to stop providing nonemergency lockout assistance

STAFF REPORTS :::

Beginning June 1, the Griffin Police Department (GPD) and Griffin Fire-Rescue (GFR) will respond to emergency lockout calls only. Individuals who call 911 for assistance with nonemergency entry requests will be referred to local locksmiths.
GPD and GFR will respond to emergency situations such as if a child or pet is locked inside the vehicle. This change is in an effort to better allocate department resources.
In 2011, the GPD received 823 requests for vehicle entry. In 2012 and 2013, requests jumped to 2101 and 2164 requests, respectively. This growth amounts to a 163% increase in vehicle entry requests over the past three years.
“A lockout takes about 10 minutes on average to resolve,” says Police Chief Steven Heaton. “However, with the volume of lockouts reported in past years, this service takes us away from our patrol responsibilities.” Based on the ten minute estimate, police officers spent approximately 360 man hours, or 15 days, responding to lockouts in 2013.
“The goal is for our emergency responders to get out of the locksmithing business,” said Public Safety Director Frank Strickland. “If someone is locked out, they can still call 911 for help, but they’ll be given the number to a locksmith.” Director Strickland added, “If it is an emergency, we’ll be on our way.”
For more information about the City of Griffin, visit http://www.cityofgriffin.com. Follow us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/cityofgriffin and on Twitter @CityofGriffin.

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