Police Chief hits back over emergency response times in Moray

A POLICE CHIEF has hit back at criticism from a member of Moray Council’s Police and Fire Committee over the time being taken to respond to emergency calls.

Last week insideMoray reported how Councillor Douglas Ross had put forward a motion asking for a full explanation over Police Scotland figures that revealed a two-minute increase in the time it was taking police to respond to 999 calls in Moray.

Councillor Ross said that it was of “great concern” and while accepting that officers do their best to respond as quickly as possible, he looked forward to hearing an explanation over why a sample of 228 grade-one calls over the last year were showing the increased response times.

Now Chief Superintendent Mark McLaren, who is the division commander for Aberdeenshire and Moray, has responded to the criticism, insisting that all emergency calls were an “absolute priority” for the force.

He said: “Average response times can be affected by a number of different factors, including bad weather conditions, distances travelled in order to get to an incident and making sure that in doing so officers and the public are safe at all times.

“Moray remains a safe place where crime has fallen and detection rates have increased. However, we are not complacent and will always look to improve our performance and response times where there are opportunities to do so.”