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Unread 01-07-2010, 01:14 PM   #1
DBLJ
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Who would be at fault here.

I'm just curiours, not laying blame. I was driving with my girlfriend and we come up to an intersection. I have the green light. We are just about over the crosswalk going below the speedlimit, it was all clear. All of a sudden a cop comes through the light on the wrong side of the road. He turns his siren on about 1 second before he is in the intersection. He isn't even looking to see if anyone is coming in the lane he is about to cross, which would be my lane.

Its a marked cruiser and he has a girl in the passenger seat that isn't in uniform. Shouldn't he have had his siren on before he got into the intersection? Its a very busy intersection. If he did hit us wouldn't it be his fault?

Thoughts on this?

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Unread 01-07-2010, 01:29 PM   #2
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He would if you where you were supposed to be. Nobody is above the law. Even when he has a need for speed he has to take others safety into consideration. Being a Cop doesn't relieve you of your responsibilities to safety of others. If you had time to pull over you could be cited for not pulling over.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 01:36 PM   #3
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If the vehicles did collide, I think there are carve-outs in some states as well as your insurance coverage that would likely put the accident at "no-fault". I think I recall reading a stipulation in my coverage stating what happens if struck by a vehicle being used during a pursuit or while displaying lights and sirens.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 01:55 PM   #4
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Any emergency vehicle is supposed to abide by the normal laws. If you have lights flashing, you must also have a siren as well.

I know that if i would hit anything in the fire truck with my lights/sirens on its still my damn fault.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:02 PM   #5
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Thats what I thought. I knew that police couldnt go through "legally"
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:07 PM   #6
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"legally' they can. They have the latitude by law, but not the right, to bust an intersection. He still has to make sure it's safe for him to do so before entering. The use of the siren and/or lights doesn't give him immediate right of way.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:12 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DBLJ View Post
Thats what I thought. I knew that police couldnt go through "legally"
That's not really true. The police and other emergency vehicles operating with lights and sirens do not have to follow traffic laws. We can drive the wrong way on one-way streets, or in the wrong lane, and exceed the speed limit. We do however have to drive with "due regard" for the safety of others. The ambulance service I work for requires us to stop before proceeding at all red lights and stop signs. You can bet if I have a wreck because I didn't stop, I will lose my job, and may be held financially responsible as well. In the scenario you describe, it sounds like the officer may have just received a call, or have been transporting someone to the hospital, but he should have used more caution when approaching that intersection.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:12 PM   #8
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I know that the driver of an EMS vehicle is at fault in that situation, lights/sirens or not.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:20 PM   #9
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That just what ive been fed so far. I wish i grew up around here in the 70's, apparently we had 14 year old kids hanging off the back of the truck at 65 mph into oncomming traffic. Must've been interesting.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spdcat01TJ View Post
In the scenario you describe, it sounds like the officer may have just received a call, or have been transporting someone to the hospital, but he should have used more caution when approaching that intersection.
That may be true, I will never know, but on his road there was an island about 3 cars long with traffic sitting at the light maybe 5 cars deep in both lanes. In my opinion he should have hit the siren before he hit the intersection. That's only from witnessing other emergency vehicles doing the same. The passenger didn't look to be injured but who knows.

When I said "legally" I meant right of way not that they can't do it.

I'm not angry about it just curious. I just thought he wasn't being safe about the way he handled the situation as he came very close to causing an accident.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:48 PM   #11
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Who would be at fault here.
Your girlfriend would be at fault. Would you have been at that intersection if she wasn't there? No, you would have been busy smashing your control arm mounts on some rocks.

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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:52 PM   #12
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At least in California, and at least for EMS vehicles. It is due regard, and it is not a "right or legally correct". Lights and sirens is asking permission and if you get in an accident unless the other guy is drunk and ran a red your out of luck. AMR has a policy country wide "I believe" to stop before going through a red. In California, other companies and fire departments might have different policies, but I believe statewide the DMV says you can roll them under 10mph. Lights and sirens together? Not needed. Depending on the time, you'll get in trouble if you have your siren on at 2am with no one out on the road.
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Unread 01-07-2010, 02:52 PM   #13
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This exact thing happend to my mom. The cop pulled out on a call from the station and hit my moms zj. He was at fault and was really good about it. The best thing is it "totaled" the jeep. She got full book value for it and I bought it back from the insurance company for $250. Called up my body shop guy, he put $700 into it and I had a 5k jeep for $950
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Unread 01-07-2010, 08:02 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackBellamy View Post
Your girlfriend would be at fault. Would you have been at that intersection if she wasn't there? No, you would have been busy smashing your control arm mounts on some rocks.


Ha saving that for Saturday. It was her car too.
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