Faults with 999 calls and power lines

Cashel ambulances
Cashel ambulances

All 999 phone calls in Northern Ireland were tonight relayed via the Scottish Ambulance Service, due a problem with their phone systems.

A spokesman for the the Northern Ireland Ambulance Service (NIAS) said it experienced difficulties with the 999 system at 5pm.

Engineers were promptly on site and services were re-established at 7:15pm, the spokesman said.

The NIAS activated its contingency plan, whereby all 999 calls were answered by the Scottish Ambulance Service and relayed to Northern Ireland immediately.

“All 999 calls were dealt with and ambulance crews continued to be despatched without delay,” NIAS said. “The mutual aid protocol with Scotland has been used on two previous occasions and has proved to be a robust contingency plan. NIAS will closely monitor the system to ensure its effectiveness remains intact and that service is maintained.”

Also tonight, up to 300 customers in the Craigavon area suffered repeated interuptions to their power throughout the evening. A Northern Ireland Electricity (NIE) spokeswoman said there was a fault on a high voltage underground cable in the area and that engineers were on site, trying to establish the exact location of the faulty section of cable.