64 Worst: 911 Response Time vs. Time It Takes To Get Ticketed or Towed

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A couple of months ago, I saw a really horrific hit and run traffic accident. I immediately called 911 on my cell and got a busy signal. I redialed and I swear, I was put on hold for 10 very long minutes. Then, it took almost 45 minutes before an officer showed up. Stories abound about how long it takes when you call to report a crime going down. Although, I do have to say, when I myself was hit by a car and the guy left the scene, both the ambulance and the police were there in less than 10 minutes. That was in West Hollywood and I was impressed. I know the city is understaffed when it comes to police officers…. but certainly not with parking control officers.

One of my pet peeves with living in Los Angeles is how ridiculously fast you can get a parking ticket. I sometimes think there is a parking violations officer for every street in the Hollywood. They remind me of vultures, waiting for the red flag to pop up so they can swoop in and slap that ticket down. And forget about a grace period. They have no mercy. I know it all boils down to money. The more tickets they write, the more cashola the city rakes in. But jeez, where’s the balance?

So which irritates you more?
Sorry, there are no polls available at the moment.

10 Replies to “64 Worst: 911 Response Time vs. Time It Takes To Get Ticketed or Towed”

  1. I have to go with 911 response times. A lot of factors go into the response but some areas of the city are much slower than others.

    Parking…there are a few notorious streets where tickets are handed out really fast, but if you don’t want a ticket, park legally. For the most part in my corner of the world you can have cars parked illegally for days blocking lanes of traffic and never get a response when you call parking enforcement.

    In the end I have to go with 911 as that is out of our immediate control and has potential for disaster. Parking is your control and not an issue if you obey the laws.

  2. 911 hands down – is there any question? When my husband was hit by a drunk driver and thrown 30 feet in Griffith Park, I panicked when I called 911 and was put on hold. I already had experience with 15 – 20 minute hold times. I started screaming at the phone, trying to figure out who to call next, but thankfully someone picked up immediately. Other than that one time, though, the hold time has been horrific.

    How could I possibly compare that to getting a ticket and being towed which, swift though it may be, is entirely my own fault?

  3. 911 is still a joke, unfortunately. Last time I called 911, I waited about 30 minutes to speak with a dispatcher. By the time they responded, the incident that was taking place was long over. In my experience, unless you mention gunfire in the first second of the call, they could care less about what is going on.

  4. i have only had one experience with 911, the operator picked up immediately, gave me directions on what to do, and stayed with me until the fire department arrived (a total of maybe 5 minutes but seeing as there’s a fire station a quarter mile away…). Of course, this was probably due to the fact I was trying to revive someone. I have never gotten a ticket in l.a. so I cannot really speak to that end.

  5. I had no problem getting through to 911 when I was mugged/carjacked. I did have a problem with the first words out of the dispatcher’s mouth being, “Was he black or hispanic?” But the response time got my vote anyway, since pretty much everyone I know has a story like yours.

  6. I’ve heard too many horror stories about 911 calls that have been put on hold, disconnected, or had a lengthy response time to not vote for it. Its not a dig at local police or fire, but frustration over an information system that is plagued with problems. Instead of spending millions to put video cameras into police vehicles, we should be investing all that cash into a new communication system for emergency services.

  7. I agree David, great suggestion…. although I must admit, the parking nazi’s irritate me more on a daily basis. I somehow believe that there should be some kind of ‘grace’ period for parking. But maybe it’s just impossible in such a crowded city.

  8. Oh this is right up my alley. Nov. 2002 was probably the worst month in my life…no I’ve had worse, but this was nonstop drama. We got into an accident in October. Got our car back in November. The day after we got the car back, it was stolen from right in front of our Melrose area apt. LAPD never showed up. I walked around the neighborhood until I could find a cop (Goodfellas and Starbucks is where they usually hang). I needed a rental car for work, so I got one and parked it where our Jetta used to be. It was street sweeping day and it ended at noon. I parked my car there at 12:03. I know this because not only did the car’s clock said that, but so did my phone. I went inside to get my work stuff, and came back out 3 minutes later. Ticket.

    A few weeks later, I was assaulted outside my apt. bldg. on Thanksgiving. LAPD response time? 3 hours and 42 minutes. The next day, I was going to cross the street and one of the cops on bike “pulled me over” for jaywalking. At 6am the Friday after Thanksgiving.

    On the other hand, the times I call 911 on the freeway, the cops are pretty fast to show. I see here in my new area that 911 is super-duper fast. I’ve heard screeching tires only to she a helicopter fly over not 2 minutes later, then I hear the sirens. I gotta say, it seems if I require police help, I’d much better be in El Sereno, than Hollwyood.

  9. any time I have used a land line phone, I get 911 right away. Its when I have called on the cell phone that it takes so long- and then you get CHP.
    Parking tickets- now that we have permit parking on our street, most of us on Hyperion Avenue have DOT on our cell phones and we get service right away.

  10. I’ve only called 911 twice, both times for things going on outside of my apartment building when I lived in a somewhat bad neighborhood around South Robertson. Both times, the police never showed up.

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