Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > PPRuNe Social > Jet Blast
Reload this Page >

Driving At 159mph Is Safe

Jet Blast Topics that don't fit the other forums. Rules of Engagement apply.

Driving At 159mph Is Safe

Old 31st Aug 2006, 22:14
  #261 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: London
Posts: 2,917
s_s

Interestingly enough, nobody has produced a bit of law which says a private citizen can break a speed limit to get out of the way of an ambulance.
If such a law exists, I don't know it.
Flying Lawyer is offline  
Old 31st Aug 2006, 22:34
  #262 (permalink)  
Resident insomniac
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: N54 58 34 W02 01 21
Age: 75
Posts: 1,859
Then you'd be allowed to continue at speed AHEAD of the Ambulance ("Well, he was FOLLOWING me and I didn't want to hold him up.")
G-CPTN is offline  
Old 31st Aug 2006, 23:47
  #263 (permalink)  

Nice
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: All Over
Posts: 322
When I was taught to drive under emergency conditions some years ago we watched a video made by the police which clearly showed a patrol car (on the blues) reaching the back of a queue of traffic at a set of red lights, and the driver turned off all audible and visual warnings, just in case their presence caused someone to jump a red light.
No emergency service has the right to force other road users into committing an offence to speed the passage of the emergency vehicle, and should any well meaning member of the public commit an offence whilst doing so, they may well get the book thrown at them.
I honestly cringe at some of things I see people do just because we are a few hundred yards behind them and on the blues.
If I come across single carriageway roadworks with a speed restcrition when responding to an emergency, I switch all of the emergency warnings off until we are clear of the restriction. No point in sitting behind some poor sod with the blue lights on, when he can't go anywhere.
Paracab is offline  
Old 1st Sep 2006, 01:28
  #264 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: London
Posts: 2,917
Paracab

What you describe is exactly what I've seen when being driven at high speed in police cars using blue lights/horns - mainly by Metropolitan Police drivers but also by three county forces. However, since my experience is very limited (no more than 25-30 times in as many years), I was reluctant to comment.
The reason explained to me was the one you've given - drivers reactions' are unpredictable and, in an attempt to help, they may do something dangerous and/or cause an accident.

FL
Flying Lawyer is offline  
Old 1st Sep 2006, 02:25
  #265 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Planet Claire
Age: 58
Posts: 587
paracab

Your post rings with common sense. The complete opposite of bjcc's rule bound drivel.
brain fade is offline  
Old 1st Sep 2006, 06:18
  #266 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: london/UK
Posts: 499
Brain Fade

As opposed to a man who lies his way out of things, then cries foul when someone else uses a defence.

What Paracab discribes is something used, if, for example, the traffic on the offside is too heavy to cross the to the other side of the road.

If the traffic in front can't go, or would be dangerous to force it too, then no point in forcing it.
bjcc is offline  
Old 1st Sep 2006, 07:49
  #267 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: London
Posts: 2,917
This is copied from the Driving School page of the Metropolitan Police website.




Advice

The Highway Code advises as follows if you see an emergency vehicle;
Emergency vehicles. You should look and listen for ambulances, fire engines, police or other emergency vehicles using flashing blue, red or green lights, headlights or sirens. When one approaches do not panic. Consider the route of the emergency vehicle and take appropriate action to let it pass. If necessary, pull to the side of the road and stop, but do not endanger other road users.

We would further add;

We do NOT expect you to risk damage to your tyres, wheels or steering by bumping up kerbs to make way for us.

We do NOT expect you to put yourself in danger by crossing red traffic lights to make way for us.

We do NOT expect you to risk road camera fines by, for example, moving in to bus lanes during hours of operation to make way for us.


We would however, appreciate your co-operation by looking well ahead and choosing sensible places to pull over. If possible avoid stopping before bends, brows of hills or narrow sections of roads where we may have difficulty passing.
The BOLD CAPITALS appear in the original.

Note that it says "risk road camera fines", and not 'risk receiving a Fixed Penalty notice to which you have a very simple defence.'



I stand by my advice:
If you break a road traffic law while making way for a police or other emergency service vehicle using lights/horns, you put yourself at risk of being prosecuted and convicted.
The use of lights/horns by police is not a means of "directing traffic". It is a request for co-operation from other road users.
As always, people are free to choose between my advice and bjcc's assertions.
And, as always, it's sensible to be cautious before accepting bold assertions which aren't answered even when challenged with straight-forward questions.



FL

Last edited by Flying Lawyer; 1st Sep 2006 at 08:40.
Flying Lawyer is offline  
Old 1st Sep 2006, 13:38
  #268 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: northants
Posts: 202
("Well, he was FOLLOWING me and I didn't want to hold him up.")

We have stopped you Sir for driving at 160mph.

I'm sorry PC plod I thought you were PC Milton and I didn't want to hold him up"
yakker is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 11:54
  #270 (permalink)  
Resident insomniac
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: N54 58 34 W02 01 21
Age: 75
Posts: 1,859
Most cases were granted exemptions by a senior officer, including one last year when the driver of a marked car was clocked at 149mph.
“The vehicle was responding to a report of a broken down public service vehicle partially obstructing the carriageway on the A90 during the hours of darkness,” said a police spokesman.
“The police driver involved requested and was granted exemption under the terms of Section 87 of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984.”
Not a motorway, but 10mph less than PC Milton.
G-CPTN is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 11:59
  #271 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Somerset, UK
Age: 70
Posts: 82
As has been said many times in this thread - one law for them and another for us plebs.
Choxolate is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 13:45
  #272 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: london/UK
Posts: 499
FL

Do you suggest that every driver who breaks the RTA's or other RT legislation is prosecuted?

Because if you do, your proffession would be considerably richer.

Next time you ask a Police Officer for his Pocket book (Specificly a Met Police One) have a look in the back, it's a section for verbal warnings. Mine and that of everyone of my collegues was full within days of issue of the said pocket book.

My propotision is supported by me having driven emergency vehicles on an almost daily basis. Not once was the driver of any vehicle who moved for me, ever reported for any offence. No matter that they frequently in allowing me past broke all a number of RT laws.

In fact, I reported an accident which a collegue of mine had where an american in a hire car moved to his right ( apparently the done thing in the US) and collected a Police van on the way to a call. My action was nothing more than to sympathise with him, he tried to do the right thing and got it wrong. Well, you get days like that!


The advice from the Met Police you quote is correct, 'We' (Police Drivers) don't expect other drivers to put themselves in danger. My prefered route at red ATS, was to go round them, if safe for me to do so. I would not expect, a driver to enter a junction against a red light, unless it was safe for him to do so.

I have used traffic direction arm signals to indicate that a driver should move. Would that be considered 'at that time engaged in directing traffic'? I don't know, ask a magistrate what his opinion would be. In any event in order for it to be tested, the driver would have to be reported. I can't think of any case where a driver has been (for any moving out of the way of any emergency service vehicle).

There may have been drivers who have been issued with an FPN or requirement for driver details(as the result of enforcement cameras), but if they returned it with explanation, I would hope (yes hope) that the non police officer admin people that deal with it would investigate it properly and cancel the ticket. I would certainly have been happy to give evidence for the defence of any driver that was in breach of traffic law due to trying to faciliate me getting to an emergency. I know most of other Police drivers would too. It is afterall in the interests of police drivers to have people out of the way.

BlooMoo & Choxolate

900 officers in 5 years? Is that all? If they have only had 900 calls which would justify breaching the speed limits in 5 years, I'm moving there!

Yes, there is one rule for emgency drivers and one rule for everyone else. What would you rather, they drive at the speed limit and stopped at every red light. Meanwhile your house is burning down. You are dying of a heart attack or you are being robbed/attacked?
bjcc is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 14:12
  #273 (permalink)  
Resident insomniac
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: N54 58 34 W02 01 21
Age: 75
Posts: 1,859
I really can't imagine anyone (other than a COMPLETE [email protected]@rd) interrupting an emergency call to stop and caution an 'offending' motorist who transgressed when moving out of the officer's way. It's either an emegency shout, or it's not . . .

bjcc - arm signals - it depends whether you restricted yourself to those in the Highway Code



(I once got myself into an embarassing situation in deepest Southern Italy, where, having been allowed to use the telephone in a tiny cafe, the lady owner was unable to understand my - English - thanks. I made the BIG mistake of giving her a 'thumbs up' at which stage she went ballistic. It seems it has a different meaning in Calabria. )

"'Thumbs up' traditionally translates as the foulest of Middle-Eastern gesticular insults — the most straightforward interpretation is 'Up yours, pal!' The sign has a similarly pejorative meaning in parts of West Africa, South America, Russia, Iran, Greece, and Sardinia, according to Roger E. Axtell's book Gestures: The Do's and Taboos of Body Language Around the World."
G-CPTN is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 14:14
  #274 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: South East England
Posts: 305
Forgive me if this, or something similar, has been posted before, but I suspect it might be of interest:

Clearing the road for an ambulance … that'll be three points and a £60 fine.

Daily Mail, Friday July 15, 2005
By Adam Powell

Mark Freeman thought he was doing his duty when he pulled over to let an ambulance pass on a 999 call. Unfortunately, the manoeuvre took him through a red traffic light – and a strategically placed camera snapped him in the process.
The wheels of justice then began to turn and nothing he could say in his defence was enough to halt them.
The railway maintenance worker ended up with a £60 fine, a £35 bill for costs, three penalty points on his licence and £300 loss on wages for time spent on three court appearances.
“I'm disgusted,” he said last night. “I can't see what else I could have done. If there was someone seriously ill or dying and I stopped the ambulance, would I have been held responsible?”
Mr Freeman, 36, instinctively drove forward when he saw the ambulance in his mirror as he drove through his home town of Doncaster. Its blue lights were flashing and its siren sounding. It was going to the aid of someone with breathing difficulties, it emerged later.
Unable to move into the nearside lane because of traffic, he went through the lights as they turned red and pulled over on the other side.
He received a letter saying he would then be prosecuted. When the married father-of-five tried to explain the incident to the South Yorkshire Safety Camera Partnership his words fell on deaf ears.
The matter was referred to the town's magistrates court where Mr Freeman appeared to plead his case. After three appearances he was advised by the court clerk that he should change his plea to guilty.
“I was told by the clerk I had little chance of winning and if it went to trial it would have cost me huge legal fees,” he said. “The law is barmy and it should be changed. Moving was the only course of action I had.”
A spokesman for the partnership said: “There is a system in place for motorists who feel they have extenuating circumstances – they can opt to take their case to a court of law. If magistrates agree the circumstances are valid, the appeal would be upheld. If Mr Freeman decided to change his position and plead guilty to the offence, that is a matter for him.”
Kevin Delaney, of the RAC Foundation, said the law was unequivocal and he regretfully would advise any motorist not to go through a red light to allow an emergency vehicle to pass. “There should be an exemption in the law to deal with this or some discretion exercised by the courts,” he said. “But sadly it does not happen.”
South Yorkshire Ambulance Trust spokesman Sue Cooper said: “It is regrettable that a motorist who gave way to an emergency vehicle has been in court. But the Trust has every confidence in the legal process and the advice given in the Highway Code.”
A spokesman for ambulance drivers union Unison said: “I'm sure Mr Freeman thought he was doing the right thing, but drivers are trained for these circumstances and he should have stopped at the light.”
Mr Freeman, who will also count the cost in higher insurance premiums, said: “Motorists today just can't win.”

http://www.radar-detectors.co.uk/new..._ambulance.asp


Disclaimer:

(1) I have no axe to grind, I have never had so much as a parking ticket in all my born days.

(2) I am NOT a Daily Mail reader. The same, of course, can't be said for Google.

Similar circumstances described here:

http://www.radar-detectors.co.uk/new...ar_through.asp

Last edited by None of the above; 3rd Sep 2006 at 14:28. Reason: Similar story
None of the above is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 14:48
  #275 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: The Valley Where the Thames Runs Softly
Age: 72
Posts: 555
It's all up above there. He pleaded guilty. That's his choice. If he had pleaded not guilty he might well have been acquitted, and if not he could have appealed to the crown court. The rest is just fluff.
Unwell_Raptor is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 15:00
  #276 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: South East England
Posts: 305
Originally Posted by Unwell_Raptor View Post
It's all up above there. He pleaded guilty. That's his choice. If he had pleaded not guilty he might well have been acquitted, and if not he could have appealed to the crown court. The rest is just fluff.
UR.......

Could I emphasise this part of the article?

Quote:

The matter was referred to the town's magistrates court where Mr Freeman appeared to plead his case. After three appearances he was advised by the court clerk that he should change his plea to guilty.
“I was told by the clerk I had little chance of winning and if it went to trial it would have cost me huge legal fees,”

Of course the law is accessible to all.............. just like the Savoy Grill.
None of the above is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 16:29
  #277 (permalink)  
PPRuNe Enigma
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Scotland
Posts: 427
“I was told by the clerk I had little chance of winning and if it went to trial it would have cost me huge legal fees”
Precisely. A confession extracted under duress is no confession at all, is it U_R ?
Grainger is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 20:16
  #278 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: The Valley Where the Thames Runs Softly
Age: 72
Posts: 555
If he didn't know what he was doing he should have taken advice.

He pleaded guilty. As in: "Yes guv. I done it".

On the facts above I might have acquitted him, or at least given him a discharge.

Once he pleads guilty, that's it.
Unwell_Raptor is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 20:26
  #279 (permalink)  
Resident insomniac
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: N54 58 34 W02 01 21
Age: 75
Posts: 1,859
Some offences are ABSOLUTE. For example, not displaying a (valid) tax disc on your windscreen. So you ARE guilty (if you don't . . . ) but there can be 'mitigating circumstances'. What if the driver had been struck from behind by another vehicle, thus pushing his vehicle through the red light? He'd be 'guilty' of crossing a red light, but hardly guilty of an 'offence' (or would he?).
G-CPTN is offline  
Old 3rd Sep 2006, 21:34
  #280 (permalink)  
PPRuNe Enigma
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Scotland
Posts: 427
He pleaded guilty. As in: "Yes guv. I done it".
And which part of: "A confession extracted under duress is no confession at all" are you struggling with U_R ?
Grainger is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.