Bolton paper puts hoax callers on web

The Bolton Evening News is placing MP3 audio files of hoax callers on its website as it starts a new campaign to catch those who ring the fire brigade with false emergencies.

The campaign is being run in conjunction with Bolton's fire service, which responded to 306 separate hoax calls between April 2005 and March 2006 at a cost of more than £500,000.

The first audio file was placed on the paper's website on Monday and featured a woman who falsely claimed that a local fish and chip shop was on fire.

Readers can listen to the hoax calls on www.boltoneveningnews.co.uk — the site also contains a number for Crimestoppers, which readers are urged to call if they have information.

Deputy news editor David Crookes, who came up with the idea, said: "The main aims of the campaign are to work closely with the emergency services in helping to prosecute hoax callers, warn people thinking about making a hoax call, and to get the readers involved by placing our paper at the heart of the community."

In March this year, the Newbury Weekly News streamed CCTV footage of a violent assault on its website.

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