Police shouldn’t have to worry about the threat of dangerous driving raps
AUTO Express has reported extensively in recent years on the declining levels of police staff in the UK and the impact on road safety.
We’ve sent several freedom of information requests and spoken to police forces and other emergency services, plus interviewed road safety experts to understand what the declining numbers of officers need in order to uphold road safety.
Part of the solution is being able to pursue criminals and dangerous drivers so they can be arrested and taken off the road. But this month, the Police Federation of England and Wales warned its 120,000 members that officers could be prosecuted for dangerous driving in emergencies.
Tim Rodgers, the federation’s lead on roads policing, told officers: “There are no exemptions to the offences of careless or dangerous driving to permit emergency driving.” Legal experts believe that police pursuits are “highly likely to fall outside the law as it is currently drafted”.
Rodgers and his colleagues are working to change the laws so that officers don’t have to worry that they might be prosecuted for dangerous driving, but so far, proposals to change the law have yet to pass.
It’s right that police and other emergency services shouldn’t be allowed to drive how they want in emergency situations, but these are highly trained and dedicated individuals, working to protect us. Placing a cloud of uncertainty on top of them won’t help improve road safety. Recent events have placed an unprecedented amount of pressure on our emergency services, and there’s no need to add more to it.
“Placing a cloud of uncertainty on top of police won’t help improve road safety”