Women reported fake house fire - because they lost their room key
A 999 call reporting a fire at a hotel on Sunday night turned out to be a hoax, made by four women who had lost their room key.
The women made the bogus call when they could not find a staff member to let them back into their room, said Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue (LFR).
Four fire crews and an aerial ladder platform were sent to the "fire".
A second hoax caller reported a "house fire with people inside" in the early hours of Sunday morning. Three fire engines, two fire officers, police and paramedics raced to the scene, near Lincoln, where they found the man who made the call did so because the house occupant was refusing to speak to him.
A warning has sounded following the incidents, about the dangers of making hoax calls.
LFR group manager for prevention and protection Dan Moss, said: “Hoax calls divert the emergency services away from people who may be in life-threatening situations and who need urgent help. This can mean the difference between life and death for someone in trouble.
“Although the message seems to have got through to most people, and we now attend far fewer hoax calls, we still see people falsely claiming there are fires, as we saw twice over the weekend. Until we arrive on scene and investigate these incidents, the appliances we send are not available should a real emergency call be received.
"Although we would still be able to respond, our next nearest appliances will have further to travel and will take longer to get there.
"This behaviour is entirely unacceptable and puts lives at risk.
"We work with our police colleagues to pursue those who make hoax calls."
The Journal has asked Lincolnshire Police whether action was taken against these culprits and is awaiting a response.