Thursday, 23 April 2009

Caught up in policies

Right, so policies are put together generally speaking for the good of the officers and staff working for Southernshire Constabulary.

So explain to me how does a policy of a police force override the LAWS of the country?

For instance:

S87 Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984. Exemption of fire brigade, ambulance and police vehicles from speed limits
No statutory provision imposing a speed limit on motor vehicles shall apply to any vehicle on an occasion when it is being used for fire brigade, ambulance or police purposes, if the observance of that provision would be likely to hinder the use of the vehicle for the purpose for which it is being used on that occasion.


So why does Southernshire Constabulary limit it's police vehicles?

I do understand the limiting of the drivers who have not completed a "high speed" driving course. However, once that is completed satisfactorily then the driver, who having a higher level of training should then be able to make an appropriate decision to drive "according to the conditions and limitations of the road and vehicle", and likewise to be able to exceed the speed limit but also keep within the confines of "being able to stop in the distance that can be seen to be clear".

So that said... when I'm on blues & twos in my "Response" vehicle I've got to watch the speeds that I am travelling at due to the class of vehicle I am travelling in is limited to only exceeding the speed limit by no more than 20 MPH. While the "Area Car" can travel through the very same road at any speed he likes/considers to be safe. Though I've seen some non-safe driving by Area Car drivers as well..

My problem with his though is that in order to properly concentrate on response driving if I am looking at the speedometer all the time then I am not concentrating on the road conditions, the other drivers, the hazards, etc. I am looking constantly to make sure I do not exceed my speeds. Safety first, or policy first?

Go figure.

Next one....... (back before I was a Response driver)

One of our vans had a flat tyre. This got changed somehow (not really sure how) and the spare was left in the back seat area of the transit van between the cage and the rearward facing seat. It rolled around in there for weeks, then it spend a week or two inside the back door of the station in a small town just outside of Anly-Town.
After another short while it ends up back in the van!

I eventually got completely sick of the fact that NO ONE would take the initiative to put the damned wheel back in it's carrier under the back of the van. So I asked about it. I was told that we weren't ALLOWED to put the spare wheel back!

Instead of driving 25 miles to our APPROVED TYRE FITTER I simply took the van to a local tyre shop and asked one of the guys to put the spare back under the van. (Oh the flat had been repaired). After doing this I asked the guy what the damage was. He told me not to worry about it so I reached in to my pocket and took out about £3 and told him to buy a pint on me and thanked him very much before leaving!

Now recently we had an Area Car off the road for a flat tyre. Ok, it's got run-flats on it.. and apparently some sort of problem with having to get some sensor reset when tyres are changed. So I've asked why the Area Car was abandoned 20 miles away from Anly-Town at yet another of our outlying stations.

I was told that it had a flat.
My comment went something along the lines of: "Why don't we have two or three spare wheels at Anly-Town and if we get a flat tyre we can change it?"
Instead I get the reply that again we aren't allowed to change it.
So there you go, a BMW Area Car off the road for 2 day until someone could be arsed to take it again 25 miles away to get the tyre changed at our APPROVED tyre shop.

So why do we have an APPROVED TYRE SHOP which is 25 miles away when there are about 6 tyre shops in Anly-Town, 3 in each of the other 2 large towns on patch and a couple more on the roads in between?

Once again, Go figure........

I'm confused, that's for sure.


  1. and then they go and fit physical speed limiters on some on the carriers,
    i mean its just embarasing when caravans start to pass you on national speed limit roads.

  2. Indeed mate. I know the feeling.

    It's also embarrassing when you've got a queue of about 20 cars behind you on a dual carriageway because you are doing 60 mph as allowed and they are too scared to go past you and you aren't allowed to go any faster.

    Of course we've got stupid satellite tracking stuff on all the vehicles as well... so if you speed you are stuffed.

    I think most forces across the country have this now though don't they?

  3. Hempshire were aleways a bit like that! Oh - and if it helps, if you muck about with the i-drive you can reset the runflat message yourself. It's pretty easy. If you can't work it out, just pop into a BMW workshop and I'm sure they'll help. Good luck

  4. R/T, do you have a blog about Hempshire then? :-)
    I'd love to hear more about their stuff..

  5. but jumping up and down on the steering wheel doesnt make it go any faster apparently.

  6. I don't I'm afraid. It just sounded like you were Hants. BM area cars and all that. Here's me jumping to conclusions again and that will never do!

  7. Sitting here shaking my head in disbelief, speed limiters and l did not realise that you now have to drive unresponse cars.

    It seems that when the public say that all the new technology is used to stop citizens doing things or fine them it is all pre tested and continued in use in police cars.

  8. R/T sorry mate. Nice guess though. But if they have that sort of policy I don't think I want to be. Oh, we do have other types of Area Car as well ;-) Just the BMW's that I've mentioned so far..

    We have Mondeo's, Volvo's, a few of the older focuses as well... (mind you though, they weren't ummm limited - odd that).

    Vetnurse, please see the next installment on the blog, you are bound to love it!

  9. Sounds about right. Apparently the headlamps on the BMWs are a real chore to change. The Astras are easier I am told.

  10. I was going to guess Hampshire too.

    The 20mph hour and no pursuit policy sounded far to familiar.

  11. Glad to see that we aren't the only farce that is shackled then!
    I think that it's far too sad to see this sort of thing.