Winter can be a busy time of year for emergency services. Patients confused about whether their symptoms are serious enough to be treated by a doctor call 999 instead.
An Observer reporter spent just one night with two paramedics and saw first hand how people can abuse 999 calls and deny a safe and effective service for other patients.
Paramedics are not there to pick up drunks or give a free ride to hospital. This is not the role of skilled people trained to deal with life-threatening situations.
And the NHS does not have the resources to be throwing away millions of pounds on alcohol-related incidents every year. Maybe those who inappropriately dial 999 should be fined?
We urge people to use the ambulance service wisely. Arriving by ambulance does not mean you will be seen more quickly. You are just insulting the skills and expertise of paramedics who are carrying out an invaluable job across the capital.
Blitz spirit can see off freeze
WHAT'S going to happen when we become more like Europe? The continent has hotter summers and colder winters than us. Now it seems the UK's getting more like it.
So how will we cope? Our houses weren't designed for such extremes. Our infrastructure hasn't been mainainted for them. Canadians laugh at our public transport falling foul of what, to them, are mild snow showers.
But maybe it will do us good as a nation. We're supposed to thrive on adversity from the air, be it Heinkel H111s dropping bombs on the East End or unexpected gusty showers.
We'll see off this cold snap with the same London spirit our knock-kneed Cockney forebears saw off the Luftwaffe.
We'll zip up and buck up.
Summer's only six months away.