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Should police chase errant drivers

  1. Jan 29, 2016 #1

    wolram

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    Should the police chase errant drivers and criminals through cities and towns, quite often the police cause accidents, i have no figures but a garage by me specializes in repairing police cars and the place is all ways full to capacity, as i say i have no figures but it is often on the news about police chases gone wrong causing
    harm to pedestrians.

    Edit just found this
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...-day-killed-150-people-road-smashes-2004.html
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 29, 2016 #2
    Not easy to generalise, some times a police chase might be justifiable under any circumstances, for example suspected terrorism activity.
    Others not justifiable, such as somebody leaving a fuel service station without paying.
    I'm sure that these days a lot of the minor offences could be more easily followed up by CCTV and number plate recognition systems,
     
  4. Jan 29, 2016 #3
    That is usually decided on a case by case basis. In some cases policy dictates that the ground (hot pursuit) be terminated for aerial pursuit. But that's usually in the case that the suspect driver has become a bigger threat because of the chase then he would be if he were allowed to flee. In those type situations (hot pursuit) becomes a follow at a distance proceed with caution situation with aerial survailance. In other cases some departments use what's called active herding technique. The pretty much cut off routs of escape and funnel the vehicle toward stop sticks or road block into a safer area. Last resort is the PIT maneuver. These doctrines vary from area to area, jurisdiction agency and state.
     
  5. Jan 29, 2016 #4

    CalcNerd

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    This is always a contentious subject. My opinion only: What is the mindset of a police officer? To catch bad guys. Bad guys are the ones that break the rules (on the road, in this case). And a new young officer is not going to think twice about doing the Right thing, turning on his light and siren and pulling the offender over. Once that person runs, what is he supposed to do?
    .
    Truthfully, you need to pursue at least a fair share of runners whether you should or not. Why? So that word doesn't get out that all you need to do is step on it to avoid a ticket.
    .
    Wiser officers often get the license plate first, then run info on the car and then hit the lights. And then make the decision to pursue.
    .
    Pursuit of a crazy driver who can run over of cause multiple highway fatalities vs not escalating a bad chase is a difficult decision for any police officer, but I suspect for a rookie cop, it is an easy decision (remember, that's why he is a cop! To catch bad guys.).
     
  6. Jan 29, 2016 #5
    Well trained officers will sometimes opt for a strategic solution, If they Identify a runner (suspect with a history of running) sometimes the will just follow at a distance call in the unmarked vehicle to take over then get ahead of a suspect and find a safe place based on direction of travel to make a high risk stop, once enough vehicles are ahead of the suspect they box him in and stop him safely.
     
  7. Jan 29, 2016 #6

    Borek

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    1. If the garage near you is the one the police cars are expected to go to, no wonder it is full of police cars.

    2. Accident with a chasing police car is a news, successful chase without an accident is not, so the news are seriously skewed.
     
  8. Jan 29, 2016 #7
    My city now has a no chase policy and basically the criminals are having a field day. Stolen cars and carjackings are at record highs.
     
  9. Jan 29, 2016 #8
    :DD Short, concise, and straight to the point. I like that.
     
  10. Jan 29, 2016 #9

    wolram

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    Did you read this Borek>
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...-day-killed-150-people-road-smashes-2004.html
    More than nine road crashes a day are caused by police – with many caused by basic driving errors.

    Police-related car accidents have also claimed more than 150 lives since 2004, including 79 during chases.

    The figures, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act reveal officers admitted causing 3,357 smashes last year – an average of more than 64 a week.



    Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...0-people-road-smashes-2004.html#ixzz3yfIG6Ony
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail[/PLAIN] [Broken][/PLAIN] [Broken] on Facebook
    More than nine road crashes a day are caused by police – with many caused by basic driving errors.

    Police-related car accidents have also claimed more than 150 lives since 2004, including 79 during chases.

    The figures, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act reveal officers admitted causing 3,357 smashes last year – an average of more than 64 a week.



    Read more:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...0-people-road-smashes-2004.html#ixzz3yfIG6Ony
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail[/PLAIN] [Broken][/PLAIN] [Broken] on Facebook
    More than nine road crashes a day are caused by police – with many caused by basic driving errors.

    Police-related car accidents have also claimed more than 150 lives since 2004, including 79 during chases.

    The figures, obtained under the Freedom of Information Act reveal officers admitted causing 3,357 smashes last year – an average of more than 64 a week.



    Read more:
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...0-people-road-smashes-2004.html#ixzz3yfIG6Ony
    Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail[/PLAIN] [Broken][/PLAIN] [Broken] on Facebook
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  11. Jan 29, 2016 #10
    Do they have aerial units? Sometimes it appears that the police are doing nothing when in fact they are opting for measures. Specially in the event of a liability situation, police departments will get sued over things of this nature and change tactics. Once the public realize its an ineffective strategy, there is usually a call for a change in tactics, (ie new equipment, new technology, better co-operation within local area jurisdictions) things like that.
     
  12. Jan 29, 2016 #11

    Borek

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    I am far from defending police, I am just trying to see things in a perspective. Number of accidents and crashed police cars alone is nothing, it needs to be compared to the number of crashes per mile for other fleets (and I refer to fleets, not to private cars, as these are driven differently). And even then the real question is - which is worse, casualties during chases, or casualties/crime caused by lack of chases. I don't know the answer, but I don't want to draw conclusions from a single point of data.
     
  13. Jan 29, 2016 #12
    I don't know, but I got to my area's monthly crime meetings and it doesn't seem like there is a plan. There have been many reports in newspapers how the criminals know the police won't chase them and use it to their advantage. Personally I think every car should have a disabling component that police can signal.
     
  14. Jan 29, 2016 #13

    Evo

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    That is an excellent idea, my car has that feature. If it's stolen, they can just turn the car off and they know where it is.
     
  15. Jan 29, 2016 #14
    Police have some devices they can use to disable a vehicle but they aren't widely used and there are safety concerns. Example: would you really want to disable a car going 80-100 mph? Unless you could take total control and apply the brakes like with a bait car you'd have a vehicle moving fast enough to cause serious damage with out power steering or brakes.
     
  16. Jan 29, 2016 #15

    Evo

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    From what I'm told the car does not come to a screeching halt, it slows down to a stop.

    https://www2.onstar.com/web/portal/securityexplore?tab=1&g=1
     
  17. Jan 29, 2016 #16

    Choppy

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    I strongly disagree with a mandated "no chase" policy.

    The decision as to whether or not to give chase under a particular set of circumstances needs to come down to officer discretion.

    I don't doubt that police chases lead to increased risks for collisions, injuries and fatalities. This is their nature - high speed, breaking traffic rules, often chasing people that are drunk, high, or desperate. But generally speaking, no one is more aware of this than the officers involved in the pursuits. There are certainly some circumstances where a chase should be broken off. But there are also some circumstances where it's more important to stop whatever activity is occurring. Say you have a person who is intentionally running down pedestrians, for example, that might be a case where giving chase is warranted.

    The bottom line is that you have to trust your police officers to make decisions like this, the same way you allow them to breach certain privacy matters during investigations when warranted, the same way you trust them to use or not use weapons. Its part of the profession of policing and it comes with the authority that you grant them when make them officers.

    The discretion of course should not be blind. It needs to be guided by proper training (which includes regular re-training), screening for poor decisions, as well as oversight and routine review.
     
  18. Jan 29, 2016 #17

    berkeman

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    Cruiser launched drones armed with Tasers. Probably under development and testing now...
     
  19. Jan 29, 2016 #18
    I agree, I don't see why this is so complicated. What happened to radio-ing the other radio cars to head the guy off at the pass and throw down a spike strip? Or like in the cops and robbers movies where the radioed squad car blocks the alley way entrance to end the city chase :oldtongue: What's wrong with that?

    I think as Choppy alluded to it should come down to discretion, not statutory law. The statutes can define parameters to discourage abuse, but at the end of the day these matters need to be left up to the officers on the scene and their experience and discretion on what force and tactics to use. If we don't allow them that, then what are we hiring them for?
     
  20. Jan 30, 2016 #19

    In some cases it would, but with some of the early bump and stop devices I read that it basically "fries" the electronics of the car on contact. Now you know that objects in motion tend to stay in motion. Now imaging that car being disabled at high speed, with no power brakes or power steering approaching an intersection with some one crossing. You have big UT OH situation cause now you have a runaway two ton vehicle that's not under control. BUT if car manufacturers were to build new cars with buit in bait car technology that would be great, in bait cars they not only cut the ignition but power steering is maintained and they can actually apply the brakes safely and lock the suspect in the car....the car basically becomes a small detention center. The problem with that is if all cars had that technology they'd all have to have OnStar and be monitored so as to accurately target the right car. The other draw back is as with all tech at some point some one will figure out a way to defeat the counter messure.
     
  21. Jan 30, 2016 #20

    WWGD

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    And it takes time and training to offset the effects of the adrenaline pumping through you. Not an easy one for a rookie.
     
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