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Old 02-01-2011, 07:52 PM   #1
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Police Drivers vs. Citizen Drivers

After reading about last nights incident that occurred on King George Highway in Surrey, I am beginning to wonder why police officers are not subjected to the same rules and regulations as other drivers.

I understand that they have a job to do that requires them to act fast to save lives at times and prevent dangerous incidents from occurring. However, they are just at risk if not more at risk to cause an accident while using one of the many tech. items in their cars.

I always see police cruisers being driven with officers on their cell phones or on their Tough Book laptops. At the end of the day, it's about risk assessment, not about job assessment. Regardless of the type of job, if you are creating a danger or putting yourself in danger by being distracted by using different technologies while driving, you probably shouldn't be using it. That's the law for citizen drivers, it should be the same for police officers.

And if the law is the same for police officers, it certainly isn't being enforced to the same standards as for regular citizens.
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Old 02-01-2011, 08:00 PM   #2
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I agree . Driving laws should be regulated to police officers as well, not just us citizens. They can just as easily get in an accident because of their cellphones or laptops. Do they not have blue tooth devices?
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:21 AM   #3
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Its so easy for us to armchair quarterback everything that the police do. A few thoughts on this one.

1/ Police are exempt from many of those laws when they are working, one of the reasons is that police get a ton of driver training, driving while using the radio etc. Training that the general public does not have.

2/ pulling over to get directions to a robbery could be the difference between the life and death for the victim. When it comes to violent crime, domestic assault etc, 30 seconds is a LOT of time. i.e the risk to the victim is greater than the general risk to the driving public.

3/ When it comes to siren use, there are circumstances that police need to get to a crime quickly and quietly to make sure the suspect isnt spooked.

Put yourself in the shoes of a victim of a crime, time is of the essence, I personally would want the police there as soon as possible.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:48 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by 5ive0 View Post

3/ When it comes to siren use, there are circumstances that police need to get to a crime quickly and quietly to make sure the suspect isnt spooked.

Put yourself in the shoes of a victim of a crime, time is of the essence, I personally would want the police there as soon as possible.
All good points, but the thing with siren/lights is traffic abuse. Time and time again I police use their lights to make an illegal u-turn in traffic in order to expedite their travel time only to pull over to order subway.

I agree that the police should be exempt from driving rules when on duty, but not to abuse it in this way.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:58 AM   #5
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All good points, but the thing with siren/lights is traffic abuse. Time and time again I police use their lights to make an illegal u-turn in traffic in order to expedite their travel time only to pull over to order subway.

I agree that the police should be exempt from driving rules when on duty, but not to abuse it in this way.
Unless you followed the Police, how would you know where they are going.. and if you were to see one that did that, that is ONE police out of many
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:01 AM   #6
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Unless you followed the Police, how would you know where they are going.. and if you were to see one that did that, that is ONE police out of many
I was in the subway looking at the maneuver across the street, then saw him enter.

Granted this was just one example, but many times I've seen police accelerate with lights to pass a vehical then just continue on their way at a normal pace.

I am also not generalizing to the entire police force, just the tiny minority that tend to abuse this.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:45 AM   #7
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I have no problem with police turning their sirens on quickly to run a red light or u turn, the places they need to be in a hurry far outweigh the importance of places we need to be at. We gotta get to a cubicle at some office somewhere while they're responding to violent crimes..


But one thing I been seeing more and more lately really worries me, and I been seeing a lot of this as of late....
Just the other day I drove past a cop who was driving in the other direction, cell phone with the left hand to her ear, right hand on the steering wheel, and eyes firmly glued to her laptop in the center console...
she must have been doing at least 60k...

and no this wasn't a glance at the laptop, I was watching her for a few seconds at least she didnt let up once to look at the road.
Even stop lights where the car is not moving is understandable, but damn this is way too far
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Old 02-02-2011, 01:20 PM   #8
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1/ Police are exempt from many of those laws when they are working, one of the reasons is that police get a ton of driver training, driving while using the radio etc. Training that the general public does not have.
So, you're saying that with proper training, it's safe to operate a radio and a laptop while driving.

No civilians have this training, but I don't image that its weeks of training to learn how to operate a cellphone while driving. Since it's obviously safe to operate a cellphone, provided you have the training, civilians should have this offered to them.

I don't blindly 'hate the popo', like most RS members do, but I do feel like they get many privileges above the average person that, most abuse and few take seriously.

And yes, I have friends who work in different levels of government from quasi-government like WorkSafe, to CBSA to RCMP.
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Old 02-02-2011, 01:57 PM   #9
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Over the years there have been a couple of instances where if I had been looking down at something inside the car I would have not been able to avoid hitting something.

Even glancing down at something for a second can mean the difference between hitting someone or something and avoiding it.

I don't care how much training you have, there's always something unexpected that can present itself. Half a second can mean the difference between hitting it or stopping in time.

Glancing down at a laptop screen for a few seconds? Draw your own conclusions.

Perhaps officers should be paired. One to drive and the other to handle the communications and laptop.
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Old 02-02-2011, 02:19 PM   #10
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What brought this all to my attention was this story:

BC Teen Gets Hit By RCMP Car While Walking Home from Work

Now this happened on King George, and for those who know the street, it is very well lit and rather LARGE. It is nearly impossible for someone to miss a person walking on the street (illegally or legally). The street has 4 lanes plus 2 bike lanes on each side. So it is most certainly a wide street. In order for a pedestrian to get hit on the street like that, I would ASSUME that a driver must have been distracted by something else.

Now what was most amusing to me was that right above this story on CTV's website was another link that read: "Police step up efforts to nab distracted drivers."
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Old 02-02-2011, 02:32 PM   #11
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1/ Police are exempt from many of those laws when they are working, one of the reasons is that police get a ton of driver training, driving while using the radio etc. Training that the general public does not have.
training or not, multitasking while driving is never a good idea.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but paramedics/fire rescue drivers almost never have to deal with laptops and other handheld devices...it should be the same for our peace officers.
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Old 02-02-2011, 03:40 PM   #12
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training or not, multitasking while driving is never a good idea.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but paramedics/fire rescue drivers almost never have to deal with laptops and other handheld devices...it should be the same for our peace officers.
That can only happen when officers are not patrolling alone. Doubling up ensures safety for both officers and citizens alike (at the expense of tax payers' money of course).
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:26 PM   #13
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I have my racing license and have done extensive driver training.... does this mean I can legally drive faster then others simply cause Ive had the extra training (defensive driving, high speed courses, advanced driver training courses)??
Its the same argument.

Although I have no complaints with the police using sirens to get places faster... they are upholding the law in those cases and well thats their job.
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:33 PM   #14
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It is nearly impossible for someone to miss a person walking on the street (illegally or legally).
I disagree.
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:34 PM   #15
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214.1 In this Part:

"electronic device" means

(a) a hand-held cellular telephone or another hand-held electronic device that includes a telephone function,

(b) a hand-held electronic device that is capable of transmitting or receiving electronic mail or other text-based messages, or

(c) a prescribed class or type of electronic device;

"use", in relation to an electronic device, means one or more of the following actions:

(a) holding the device in a position in which it may be used;

(b) operating one or more of the device's functions;

(c) communicating orally by means of the device with another person or another device;

(d) taking another action that is set out in the regulations by means of, with or in relation to an electronic device.
Prohibition against use of electronic device while driving

214.2 (1) A person must not use an electronic device while driving or operating a motor vehicle on a highway.

(2) Without limiting subsection (1), a person must not communicate by means of an electronic device with another person or another device by electronic mail or other text-based message.

Exceptions to prohibition — emergency personnel

214.3 Section 214.2 does not apply to the following persons who use an electronic device while carrying out their powers, duties or functions:

(a) a peace officer;

(b) a person driving or operating an ambulance as defined in the Emergency and Health Services Act;

(c) fire services personnel as defined in the Fire Services Act.
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:39 PM   #16
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Quote:
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I am beginning to wonder why police officers are not subjected to the same rules and regulations as other drivers.
You would have to ask this question of your MLA. They make the rules.

Quote:
I always see police cruisers being driven with officers on their cell phones or on their Tough Book laptops.
If you caught CBC's Almanac yesterday afternoon you would have listened to RCMP Supt. Norm Gaumont being interviewed on the subject of distracted driving. This question was raised by a caller and he responded that when you see this you should take the car number and make a complaint.
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Old 02-02-2011, 05:41 PM   #17
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Unless you followed the Police, how would you know where they are going.. and if you were to see one that did that, that is ONE police out of many
i have definetly seen cops blow thru read lights with there sirens on to only drive at a normal pace....

or better yet, hit the lights pull a u and just drive normally.

ALOT of cops abuse the siren/lights when not responding to a call.
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Old 02-02-2011, 07:05 PM   #18
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How do you know they arent responding to a call? 85% of the calls arent responded to with full emergency equipment all of the time.
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:23 PM   #19
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How do you know they arent responding to a call? 85% of the calls arent responded to with full emergency equipment all of the time.
As it has already been mentioned, we are discussing this from a LOGICAL stand-point. We are not cop-haters but it's a common observation.

So these posts that keep stating "how do you know the cops aren't responding to a full emergency..." are irrelevant.

We are talking about those incidents where it is BLATANTLY obvious that the cop is just cruising/patrolling and not responding to an emergency. I don't foresee any reasonable person coming on here saying "oh man, that cop was responding to an emergency to save someone's life and he was looking at his laptop! What an outrage!"
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Old 02-02-2011, 09:25 PM   #20
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I disagree.
You disagree that on (King George Highway), it's impossible to see someone crossing the street if you're not preoccupied with another task?
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:30 PM   #21
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You disagree that on King George Highway, it's impossible to miss someone crossing the street if you're not preoccupied with another task?
He disagrees with the statement that it's impossible to miss someone crossing the street, legally or illegally. Also, parentheses removed because they were pointless and detracted from the intent of the statement.

It also seems that several people on Revscene disagree with your blanket statement as well:

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Originally Posted by originalhypa View Post
That section is a gnarly stretch of road. We're talking 8 lanes of Surrey driving monkeys, many of them high, partially retarded, or both.
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Originally Posted by fsy82 View Post
Well lets not get over our heads here.
...
And she crossed King George Highway which is always a busy road.
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yes she was jay walking across six lanes of traffic.
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Originally Posted by Tachycardia! View Post
You guys have to know that area. Its not exactly the best location. Its got a blind corner set at the top of a hill, less than optimal lighting, and is the intersection of two high traffic streets. Any number of factors could've led to this horrible accident so lets see what the investigation determines.
Quoted from this thread: http://www.revscene.net/forums/surre...d-t636702.html
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:35 PM   #22
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I have never, in my 10 years of driving, been in an situation where I almost hit or not see a pedistrian legally or illegally crossing the road.

i've never been unable to see an oncoming jaywalker. Even at that same location.


That being said, if the victim was jaywalking, then she's playing with or own life. That stretch of the road IS pretty big, and sometimes dark. People there drive fast too.

Now begs another question: Why don't the police force have HID's for better visibility? I used to work at ford. The Crown Vics are just GARBAGE cars with horrible mileage, shit for emissions, and just a complete lack of power. The vehicles are based on 40 year old tech, so can't even really retrofit HID's. Why don't the Police switch to different vehicles, and get better illumination equipment? Just curious.
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:36 PM   #23
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I would assume that it would be pretty hard to be able to tell whether the officer was responding to a call or not. That one case you saw with your own eyes where the officer made a U-turn with his lights on just to go into subway is one of the rare exceptions
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:49 PM   #24
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He disagrees with the statement that it's impossible to miss someone crossing the street, legally or illegally. Also, parentheses removed because they were pointless and detracted from the intent of the statement.
Sorry but the parentheses ARE INDEED relevant seeing how he was responding to MY original statement.

"Now this happened on King George, and for those who know the street, it is very well lit and rather LARGE. It is nearly impossible for someone to miss a person walking on the street (illegally or legally)"

My statement says it's impossible to miss a person walking on "the" street...So again, I ask again, is he referring to King George as well or any street in general.

Thanks for removing the parentheses though Graeme. I'll put them right back in
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Old 02-02-2011, 10:56 PM   #25
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Also in addition to Graeme's several quotes from various RevScene threads...Everyone that keeps talking about 6 or 8 lanes of traffic isn't looking at the accident scene relatively. There is in fact a barrier (WITH A FENCE) dividing the oncoming traffic. If we are talking about this particular accident, we must look at the scene of the accident and see it in context to the actual part of King George that the accident took place.

That being said, you're really only looking out for one-way traffic and the possibility of illegal jaywalkers coming from the right side OR the left...
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