'Only 30 calls from July 21 used in police data' - RTHK
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'Only 30 calls from July 21 used in police data'

2020-03-10 HKT 12:08
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  • Chief Superintendent Kenneth Kwok said some of the calls they got during the Yuen Long attack may have been about illegal parking. Photo: RTHK
    Chief Superintendent Kenneth Kwok said some of the calls they got during the Yuen Long attack may have been about illegal parking. Photo: RTHK
The police said on Tuesday that only around 30 calls received during the July 21 Yuen Long attack were included in the calculation of last year's emergency response time in the New Territories, which showed officers had responded within 15 minutes to close to 98 percent of calls received.

Chief Superintendent of the Police Public Relations Branch, Kenneth Kwok, also told RTHK's Millennium programme that the large number of calls may have been aimed at "paralysing" the emergency line before the attack took place.

On July 21, when a gang wearing white T-shirts and armed with iron rods and sticks attacked passengers at Yuen Long MTR Station, police in the area received around 24,000 calls for help in just three hours between 10.30pm and 1.30am.

But officers only arrived at the scene almost 40 minutes later and one of the commanding officers dismissed media questions on their late response by saying he didn't have a watch to see what time it was.

In a paper submitted to Legco's Finance Committee, police said their average response time to emergency calls in the New Territories was within 15 minutes in 97.9 percent of cases last year.

Speaking on the radio programme on Tuesday, Kwok said not all of the 24,000 emergency calls they got on that night were about the Yuen Long Station attack. Some may have been about illegal parking, and some about general fighting, he said.

Due to the large number of calls, only 1,100 calls were connected, and more than 30 of them involved the Yuen Long sub-district, he said.

These 30 calls for help were finally included in the calculation of the rate of calls for help, he said. Asked if this was reasonable, Kwok said this was the usual method used by the department.