Winnipeg will be getting a new information phone line very soon. Starting sometime later in January you'll be able to call 3-11 for any questions you have about a city service.

It'll offer convenience to residents and it's hoped a much needed break for 9-11 operators.

"9-11 emergency what are you reporting? A broken phone. A broken phone? Yes. You have to phone 6-11 for that sir okay." It's a real call to a real 9-11 operator, and according to the city it happens far too frequently.

It seems people will call 9-11 for just about anything. From questions about garbage day, to complaints about pot holes, even inquiries about a phone number for a pizzeria. Emergency dispatchers have heard it all.

"It can certainly cause a lot of problems and it is tying up our operators when they should be, and could be answering calls of an urgent matter," explains Cst. Jason Michalyshen of the Winnipeg Police Service.

The 3-11 number will be a non-emergency line designed to help alleviate some of the nuisance calls 9-11 dispatchers receive everyday. The city won't say much about the new phone service, just that it is on budget and is expected to be available by the end of January.

In 2001, two women were stabbed to death after placing several 9-11 calls. Their calls were ignored. An inquest into the deaths revealed the need for a non-emergency line.

Like 9-11, 3-11 is easy to remember and it will be internally operated by city staff.

A 2007 report from city council shows the system will cost about $31-million over five-years.

A 3-11 phone service was just launched in Edmonton. It's open to the public 24-hours-a-day and allows people to call in about any city service. The same is expected here in Winnipeg.

The city hopes the new phone service will work and keep 911 phone lines open for emergency calls only.

With a report from CTV's Caroline Barghout