If you work as 9-1-1 operator, you’re often on the phone with people during some of the worst, most painful, or most terrified moments of their lives, and that can take a toll on a person over time.
Luckily, these 9-1-1 operators also get plenty of hilarious calls to balance things out, and these 16 are here to share the ones so funny they’ll never forget them.
1. At least it’s not all terrible.
Someone legit called me today to say “some guy has a pet rock and he almost got hit by a car collecting his pet from the roadway”
I have so many everyday.
2. Even in Malibu…
Not a dispatcher, but I did get dispatched by them. My favorite call was when my pager went off and I read aloud, “Woman bit by camel.”
We were working in Malibu.
3. Maybe it really was hypothetical.
I briefly worked as a 911 operator. When someone called on the non- emergency line we always answered the same way- “Blank police and fire this is a recorded line, how can I help you?”
We get a call on that line, I answer as usual and a very inebriated sounding woman asks the following: “Hypothetically speaking if my boyfriend had a few grams of cocaine and I called the police to tell them about it would either of us get into any trouble?” “Ma’am you’re calling the police on a recorded line.” “I know, but what does the law say?”
“ I don’t know ma’am, I’m not a police officer, would you like me to send one?” “Yes please.” She gives me her address, an officer responded but there where no arrests. That one had me scratching my head.
4. Eh, what’s the difference?
I just certified as a call taker and got mandated for overtime (of course) on my first shift. Policy was if someone insisted they saw something we take it as face value and enter the call.
Well this lady called me just after midnight and swore she saw a chupacabra on the west side of Orlando and Insisted in an officer doing an area check.
Not too long after that a coworker was in on his night off and left the building. He called 2 mins later saying he saw a kangaroo hopping down the street.
5. That’s a bad moment.
One time a guy called in while I was training and stated he had cut his penis. When I answered you cut your penis?! The trainer smacked me on the arm and told me he said he’d cut his hand. She looked at me like the biggest pervert!
Then 10 seconds later into the conversation he says, “Yeah I was trying on a rubber that was too small and I had to cut it off so I cut right into my penis!”. She almost couldn’t stop herself from laughing.
6. The answer is still none.
My dad used to be in charge of the 911 call center. One particular story I remember was in like 09 some guy called asking how much weed he could have in his car while driving through the state.
They went back and forth for maybe 20 minutes of the guy repeating and rephrasing the question and my dad just responding “none.”
7. More bizarre than funny.
A guy called in because his dog had bitten a seagull and was now “acting strange.” He demanded we find the bird, capture it, and test it for rabies. The whole circumstances were vague and he was unwilling to listen to reasonable advice(like that birds can’t carry rabies).
He had the audacity to file a complaint when informed we would not be doing what he wanted.
8. Bless her heart.
I had a sweet sounding older lady call because people were setting off fireworks and she was concerned the wildlife would get scared and get hit by a vehicle.
When I told her that the fire department was being sent to check it out she got furious, saying she doesn’t want the fire department, that it was a waste of tax payers dollars, and that she would never call again.
9. Raccoons are audacious, man.
Had a grown man calling in about “a monster trying to get into his son’s room ” ….. he’s the right kind of frantic where I KNOW it’s not a mental health crisis , but I still couldn’t figure it out . Well, hes a middle Eastern male with a real thick accent and I was having a hard time understanding, so he gave the phone to his son .
The monster had climbed a tree and was at his bedroom window . And it was as big as his dog . And it has hands like him but tiny ….. Wait, what ? Right there I told the kid to see if it had rings on his tail … Yes … They had just moved to America a month ago, and had never heard of raccoons .
I couldn’t mute myself fast enough , and the father heard me laughing . I think that’s what helped calm him down. I explained what a trash panda was and welcomed him to our wild jungle .
10. Drugs are a heck of a thing.
Lady called in because she thought Willie Nelson was having a cardiac arrest in her trailer, and she needed an ambulance.
I started giving her CPR instructions, and come to find out when paramedics got there, she was doing compressions on the couch cushions.
11. This is funny, even if you’re the dude.
A man requiring extrication from an Under Armor insulated shirt.
His shoulder popped out of the socket while he was pulling it on, it was halfway on/halfway off and his arm was locked and dislocated.
12. That second one, though.
There are funny calls that come in all the time. I talked to a pizza delivery guy who couldn’t reach his destination because a defiant chicken was standing in the middle of the road. I stayed with him on the phone as he pleaded with it to finally move along. Truly a chicken crossing the road moment.
Another time I took a call where a guy insisted he was in an argument with a man dressed as a giant Pepsi bottle. He said the man in the Pepsi suit had stolen his debit card and refused to give it back. Upon arrival the officers told me he was high as sh%t and arguing with a vending machine.
13. Was it a big fish, or?
I only worked dispatch for a few months and I got a call for a fish being stuck in a woman’s ear.
14. It’s better to size up.
When I was a Fire dispatcher, I had to send a Squad to remove a c*ck ring. So there’s that.
15. How do you not laugh?
No longer a 911 operator, but I had two.
First one when a young man realized what happens to some women during the first time. He thought he poked something and hurt her.
Second was when a man and a woman were getting hot and heavy – he ended up getting junk stiuk inside of a Gatorade bottle. Getting his junk stuck wasn’t funny (it’s a serious medical concern and could result in emergency surgery) – but his S.O. yelling in the background about how he could have just asked for a bl*w job and she would have given it literally k**led me throughout the call.
16. Stay away from the claws.
Caller called because they got their head stuck in a cat tree. With the cat stuck inside with it. Throughout the call I kept hearing like “ow, f*ck” and “dude this isn’t fun for me either” “dude, i know f*ck!” “dude!”…
Caller ended up going to the hospital for a minor case of serious head lacerations. Ok I don’t really know the severity but I’m sure they got some stitches.
The other cool thing was that the caller was using an apple watch to call 911 because obviously they wouldn’t be able to hold the phone to their ear. We get about a dozen misdials from apple watches a day, it was nice to finally see one being used for ‘real’
17. Downright hilarious.
I had a guy call 911 because he was concerned about an injured seagull in a Chipotle restaurant parking lot.
Apparently while on the phone, he tried to pick up or check on the bird at which point the bird started squawking, then he started freaking out and I started having trouble telling them apart.
Then there I could hear what might have been wings flapping, a brief silence, and suddenly the guy started hyperventilating and screaming he needed an ambulance because he was having a heart attack and that the bird flew off.
I wasn’t sure if he was being serious so I got him over to EMS as a precaution. Upon transfer and getting EMS on the line he got very quiet and said, “I think I’m okay, I’ll call you back later,” and hung up and would not answer on callback.
I still wonder about Steven Seagull when I drive by a Chipotle.
18. This should be in a movie.
I called (the non emergency police line) once for my across the way neighbor playing Christmas music at all hours for seven months straight.
Turns out I live next to a Deaf building and the person had no idea that their music was 1) playing 24/7 and 2) so loud I could hear it in any room of my apartment across the driveway.
The operator was absolutely cracking up because I was like look, it’s July, I can’t take hearing holy night again. The call back I got when they made contact with the person was absolutely hilarious- the cop couldn’t stop chuckling every few words.
19. Some people…
It’s Thanksgiving Day morning and I’ve just started my shift around 5 a.m.
I’m the only one working for the day shift and settle in for what should be a mostly peaceful day of hanging out, eating food, playing New Vegas, and relaxing.
Then my 911 line rings. I pick it up and go through the usual run down only to be greeted not by someone with a medical emergency, a fire, crime in progress, nothing like that.
She needed help with making a turkey. I told her this was an emergency line and she informed me this was an emergency because she had family coming over that night and she had to do Thanksgiving dinner. I apologize for her problem but inform her it’s not an actual emergency so I need to clear the line.
And yes I went through our procedures to check to see if this was a domestic issue or something like that where the individual couldn’t speak freely.
This was not that.
She calls back a few minutes later and hangs up upon realizing it is me. She calls back again, gets me, and I inform her it’s only me working so this won’t work. Before I can tell her that LE will come out to her location next time she hangs up.
About 10 minutes later she calls again pitching a sob story about her Thanksgiving being ruined and needing help to salvage it for her family. I let her know LE is on their way, she tries to call it like I’m bluffing until I read back her address. So she hangs up.
LE arrives and she plays dumb like she has no idea why they are there but everything is recorded and we’ve had her number and address ping with every call. She gets a verbal and they leave only for her to call me back to chew me out for sending LE to her home and scaring her kids so she wants to talk to my supervisor to file a complaint.
Shockingly this didn’t get her very far but it did get LE back out to her place to actually issue her a citation for abusing 911 and tying up the lines.
Monday morning she called 911 again to complain about me and again got another citation.
Then there was the boy who called because his older brother climbed on the roof, couldn’t get down, and so he panicked dialed 911 so we could get his brother down before mom and dad got home. The brother was apparently planning to jump to the trampoline but chickened out and couldn’t climb back down.
Mom and dad came home while the fire department was getting him down. They weren’t happy.
20. As kids are.
My sister once called because she wanted to know who would be on the other end of the line. I couldn’t hear what the person said but I heard my sister’s parts of the convo.
Sister: hello? Who’s this? … Oh…
Then she hung up on the operator. They ended up calling back and my dad picked up and had to explain that his daughter was just being curious.
21. Oh, dear.
Numerous calls where someone has handcuffed themself to a SO during coitus and lost the key (if it’s not busy this seems to draw most available officers).
Not me but a coworker: a person was pleasuring themselves with the handle of a scissors and it got stuck.
22. My husband would totally be guilty of this.
I once called 911 because I cut my finger and wanted to talk to my mom, who was a dispatcher. I called crying asking to talk to her by name. She was more pi**ed at my dad for not waking up when I tried to go to him first haha.
23. Someone better do something.
A little kid called 911 because he wanted the cops to come arrest his brother.
You see, their mom said that the caller’s brother was supposed to share the legos, but he wasn’t sharing. The caller’s brother said that he was playing with all of the legos, which wasn’t possible. There were too many legos for one person to play with all of them at once, argued our caller. Therefore, his brother was a liar, a jerk, and a turd and we needed to come and arrest him.
We had a high degree of confidence that this wasn’t a coded request for help, so we asked to speak to an adult- confirmed that there was no distress and closed the case. Share your legos, kids.
24. That took a twist.
Actual 911 operator here. So far the silliest was a guy who called, all concerned about the number of birds flying around because there was an air show nearby and he was worried the planes would hit the birds
25. This is so wholesome.
I called 911 because our washing machine was broken and my parents were arguing about it (nothing violent, just arguing, but it was unusual for them and scared 5 year old me). I dialed the number but chickened out instead of hitting the call button. Little did I know, the phone called it anyway. So five minutes later a policeman showed up at our house.
I hid under the back porch, my mom made me come out, and the officer explained that 911 was only for emergencies. He was really nice about it though!
26. To be fair, birds are scary.
I had one who called at like 2am to report suspicious activity – he could hear birds outside his apartment and it’s dark outside…it’s obviously someone playing some recording of birds because birds sleep at night.
27. Extended hijinks.
Former dispatcher here. My funniest call was a guy called in and said he wanted to report a pig running around.
I had to ask a pig, as in curly tailed pig. He said yes sir he’s running by taco bell now.
I dispatch out animal control who gets on scene and asks for help. One of our officers assists and for the next 40 minutes or so I got to listen to two of the cities finest chase a young pig around businesses
Once the pig was finally caught it was determined the pig came from a transport truck. The driver said he didn’t want the pig back so the pig was given to the humane society.
Never did hear what happened to the little fellow after that.
28. Bless her heart.
Friend of mine was a 911 dispatcher. The funniest call he ever had was a woman who claimed she was locked inside of her own vehicle. After explaining to her where the door lock switch was, she was able to free herself.
29. Bless their hearts.
I was a 911 dispatcher years ago but had two calls specific calls that still make me laugh.
a frazzled mother called cause her six year old had gotten into the roof and she couldn’t get him down. She kept screaming about how we need to hurry…not because she was worried he would get hurt, but because he had done the before and last time he peed in the air vents.
this was before weed was legal in my state, but a college kid called asking for an ambulance. He was super worried that he was having an allergic reaction to the weed he just smoked. When asked about his symptoms he said “I just can’t stop eating Cheetos”.
30. How dare.
Not a 911 operator but during residency they had us shadow one during my EMS month.
This woman called 911 3 times in 10 minutes for a service animal in a mall. “He’s here staring at me! No I don’t care that he’s helping. He just licked his nuts!”
31. You know where this is going.
Not me but my wife who works both as a secretary for a fire department and is a volunteer firefighter/emt. A lady calls asking if she can donate a building for a training burn in. After asking questions she finds out it’s not a building but an RV.
More questions. It’s not her RV, it was abandoned on her property. Just a few more questions. It’s not exactly abandoned. It’s her ex-husbands RV. And he’s living in it and won’t leave. She wants my wife’s fire department to burn it down. Wife’s fire department declined.
32. Kids are the best, aren’t they?
Was a 911 Operator before becoming a Paramedic.
Had a lot of funny ones, but by far my favorite involved an all too common problem of a kid getting a hold of a locked cellphone and only being able to dial 911.
It was Father’s Day mind you, had this particular kid (about 5 years old) call in at least 6 times but he’d never stay on the line long enough for us to get a good “ping” on his cellphone. It was probably about 2200 local at the time, not early but not too late in the night.
Long story short we were finally able to get him to stay on the phone long enough by talking about how his teddy bear was “sick”. We asked to speak to his parents and he told us they were in bed and the door was locked, so we asked him to go knock on the door, he then told us he had been locked in his room.
Okay….. I think we know what’s going on now.
By this point we had an officer en route to this kid’s house to go make sure everything was okay and to tell his parents the kid has been calling 911.
The officer arrives on scene, a few minutes go by, then the officer comes over the radio and says “S120 back in service, the teddy bear is 10-4”.
The officer made his way up to the comm center and proceeded to tell us all that the kid’s Dad answered the door wearing only boxer shorts and was more than a little agitated when he found out his son had been calling 911.
Apparently the dad had been getting his Father’s Day “gift” from mom when the officer showed up.
33. An awkward moment.
I don’t know if this counts as “funny.”
I’m from a small town. Everyone knows everyone. My uncle Jim is a cop. All the dispatchers and first responders know my grandma pretty well.
One day, my uncle was working on something electrical in the basement. He was shocked. He was unconscious, but he ended up being fine.
My grandma called 911, and screamed into the phone, “Vee! It’s Kate! Jimmy’s been shocked!”
What Vee, the dispatcher, heard was, “Jimmy’s been shot!”
Every single police officer, sheriff’s deputy, EMS, paramedic, firefighter, and park ranger in town arrived at my grandma’s house. My uncle was super confused and embarrassed.
Human beings never fail to dish out the humor, right?
If you’re a 9-1-1 operator, share your own funny stories with us down in the comments!