Accident caused by moving for police car

Koi

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Earlier this evening I was involved in an accident, the brief details are as follows:
I was travelling along a duel-carriageway (which has a 40 mph speed limit) & arrived at a set of traffic lights which were on red.
I came to a halt in the outside lane next to a car in the nearside lane which had stopped at the same time as myself.
Almost as soon as I came to a stop I noticed a police vehicle in my rear view mirror, heading towards me at a fast speed with his siren & flashing lights both active.
The traffic lights were still on red so I moved forward & pulled in front of the car to my left, a second or so after I started to move the car to my left also moved & the front offside corner of his bumper collided with the side of my car.
There is now a deep dent & scratches along the side of my car from just slightly behind the front edge of the front door all the way back to, & including, the rear wheel.

Following the collision we both stopped, the police car sped past but he also stopped immediately after the traffic lights, the Police officer then walked back to take details from myself & the other driver.

The Police officer also spoke to his sergeant on his radio & then he gave the other driver & myself his & his sergeant’s details.

I’m gutted, my car is a 13 month old C Class 320 CDI, it had it’s 1st service 4 weeks ago & I spent Easter Monday washing, cleaning & polishing it. The dent along the side of the front door is quite deep but less so along the rear door, I think the front door might need a new skin.
Obviously I’m going to be without my car for a spell whilst it gets repaired, I just hope it gets repaired so that I cannot tell the difference afterwards.

This is all very ironic because when my car was being serviced it was damaged by the dealer’s valetor! The dealer obviously carried out repairs but I only emailed them last Tuesday to say that the repair was visible & that I wasn’t happy, they have agreed to take the car back in for further work…. Even more work now!

Does anyone know how this will affect my no claims bonus?
Are the Police liable?
Will it be knock for knock with the other driver?
I have no claim to answer as far as the Police are concerned but could the insurance companies view this as totally my fault?
:(:(:(
 

Quick Silver

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You are not obliged to go through a red light to give passage to blues and two's , I never do since getting a fixed penalty for jumping a red light which had a camera on it when I let two fire engines through as I was the only vehicle in that lane . It was my first traffic offence in 42 years of driving and I was not pleased as I am a profesional driver and was proud of my clean licence.

Your insurance company will penalise you as you were the one that changed lane and crossed the path of the other car at best it will be on a knock for knock basis .
 

100%Bitch

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Sorry to hear about your lovely car but it will be treated just like any other accident you had caused. As QS, you are the driver who changed lanes without just reason and it could even be construed as driving without due care and attention, although that would be incredibly harsh. You must have pulled over very close to him.
 

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Yes we have had a few of these stories, it would appear that it is best to do nothing when you are at traffic lights, and the blue lights come up from behind.

With modern repair methods, the damage should not be visible once repaired.
 

Rory

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The traffic lights were still on red so I moved forward & pulled in front of the car to my left, a second or so after I started to move the car to my left also moved & the front offside corner of his bumper collided with the side of my car.

Did the other driver admit that he drove into you? I think that would be more significant than crossing into his lane.

From the description however, he could easily say that you just turned across the front of his stationary vehicle and scraped your car on his.


Very easy for people to say they wouldn't go through lights for an emergency vehicle but in practice no-one wants to think they held one up. I would also say a Police car up your backside with blues and twos going is directing you to go through the lights. Ironically, they're probably the least likely of the emergency services to really need to get through quickly.

Interesting that the Police car stopped - I saw an accident just the other daye where a Police car went straight through a red light from the turn left lane. Thsi caused a car crossing to stop suddenly resulting in it being rear ended - I'm sure the Police officer must have seen what happened but he didn't stop,
 

JEZ.S320L

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A friend of mine did the same for an Ambulance - moved forward through a red light **FLASH** :shock:. Result? 3 points and a £120 fine - despite 2 appeals.!!! :(

Might have been better off robbing an old lady - smack on wrist and a £50 handout from the poor box.!!

Ain't British 'justice' wonderful?
 

*Thumper

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Your intentions were highly honourable, and should be appluaded .............. However ! ............ you shiould only move for an emergency vehicle if it is safe and legal to do so ............ the honas is on the emergency vehicle to get round traffic obstructions, if it is safe to do so ...................

The fact is ......you made a vehicle manouver to the inside lane and collided with another car .................... I bet neither of you indictated your intention, and checked to make sure it was safe ................ so therefore .......... I'm afraid ............ at best it will be knock for knock .. or if your lucky ............. the other driver will kop for both as he (hopefully) pulled out without indicating ............. you on the other hand dont have to indicate to pull into lane one, if you percieve there to be no danger in doing so.

I hope the above has given you food for thought........ before filling in the claim forms !
 

Alex M Grieve

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Earlier this evening I was involved in an accident, the brief details are as follows: I have no claim to answer as far as the Police are concerned but could the insurance companies view this as totally my fault?:(:(:(

I have no doubt what the others say is correct, but I have every sympathy for you. As a passer by or "Good Samaritan" you could render first aid to someone having a seizure in the street, get it wrong, occasion their unnecessary death and get less criticism than you have attracted here.

Sadly, motor cars, insurers and the law are a pretty hostile environment and "best endeavors" or "good intentions", as you are discovering, are not convertible currency.

As has been noted by Rory, if the policeman stopped he can not have been in that much of a hurry anyway. Perhaps the Chief Constable would consider an ex gratia payment under "corporate entertaining"?
 

cmax200

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The point to remember is that emergency Fire/Ambulance/Police vehicles even when using Blues and 2s are not permitted under The Road Traffic Act to pass Red lights and only do so if they feel it is safe to proceed and be it on their head. if the driver of the emergency vehicle has an accident or directly causes an accident then he has no defence in law. I am sure you will find that the only exemptions to The Road Traffic Act are exceeding the speed limit and obstructive parking.(Its a long time since I drove an Emergency Vehicle so things might have changed but I dont think so) The law turns a blind eye to the action. You could make a case that his actions were such that he tried to force his way past hence leaving you no option but to move, in fact you were taking evasive action.
 

DAVE HULL KR

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A friend of mine did the same for an Ambulance - moved forward through a red light **FLASH** :shock:. Result? 3 points and a £120 fine - despite 2 appeals.!!! :(

Might have been better off robbing an old lady - smack on wrist and a £50 handout from the poor box.!!

Ain't British 'justice' wonderful?
That is totally out of order, he should of gone all the way to the court.
 

Rory

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The point to remember is that emergency Fire/Ambulance/Police vehicles even when using Blues and 2s are not permitted under The Road Traffic Act to pass Red lights and only do so if they feel it is safe to proceed and be it on their head. if the driver of the emergency vehicle has an accident or directly causes an accident then he has no defence in law. I am sure you will find that the only exemptions to The Road Traffic Act are exceeding the speed limit and obstructive parking.(Its a long time since I drove an Emergency Vehicle so things might have changed but I dont think so) The law turns a blind eye to the action.

Traffic Signs Regulations 2002 give exemptions from red light signals and keep right/left arrows to vehicles being used for fire brigade, ambulance, bomb or explosive disposal, national blood service or police purposes.
 

JEZ.S320L

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Traffic Signs Regulations 2002 give exemptions from red light signals and keep right/left arrows to vehicles being used for fire brigade, ambulance, bomb or explosive disposal, national blood service or police purposes.

BUT surely they have to proceed with CAUTION - which, if they don't do and subsequently cause an accident, are liable.
 

Rory

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BUT surely they have to proceed with CAUTION - which, if they don't do and subsequently cause an accident, are liable.

Absolutely - they're required to treat red lights as Give Ways. They get into trouble when they just blast through at speed.
 

cmax200

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Thanks for the update on the Regs, I last drove on the blues in 1984. I can remember when someone was injured by an emergency vehicle going through Red lights and the driver was prosecuted, our Union then advised all drivers to stop at Red lights in future turn the Blues and 2,s off then proceed when it was safe to do so. Not an easy thing to do when responding to a call (I drove one of those big Red Things), in the end we all went back to what we did previously but just with extra caution.
 

davidsl500

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I would write to the Police Chief for the county and explain that you felt you were put under extreme pressure to move out of the way and ask for compensation for whatever losses you sustain. It is fair to say that the accident would not have happened if the police car hadnt been there! - and that you acted in a public spirited way. I believe that the Police do have a fund / insurance for this kind of event.

I have had the "police car up the backside" at the traffic lights myself with blues and two's with headlights flashing and it is a quite hard to ignore them...
 

hawk20

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If the car on the inside lane was stationary when you started to pull in front of him, then IMO he is responsible for the damage to your car, provided you left him time and room to respond safely to your actions.
 
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Koi

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Did the other driver admit that he drove into you? I think that would be more significant than crossing into his lane.

From the description however, he could easily say that you just turned across the front of his stationary vehicle and scraped your car on his.


Very easy for people to say they wouldn't go through lights for an emergency vehicle but in practice no-one wants to think they held one up. I would also say a Police car up your backside with blues and twos going is directing you to go through the lights. Ironically, they're probably the least likely of the emergency services to really need to get through quickly.

Interesting that the Police car stopped - I saw an accident just the other daye where a Police car went straight through a red light from the turn left lane. Thsi caused a car crossing to stop suddenly resulting in it being rear ended - I'm sure the Police officer must have seen what happened but he didn't stop,


The lights were on red, he had no reason to move forward, I have 2 photos of where we both came to a stop... his rear wheels are on the white stop line, my car is fully in front of his.
He wasn't even aware of the police car coming up behind, I'm pretty sure he set off because he wanted to race me.
 

Rory

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He wasn't even aware of the police car coming up behind,

Did he admit that to the Police officer? Was there any suggestion of either of you being prosecuted?

I'd certainly stand my ground if I where you but it's really up to how the insurance company see it.
 

jberks

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You are not obliged to go through a red light to give passage to blues and two's , I never do since getting a fixed penalty for jumping a red light which had a camera on it when I let two fire engines through as I was the only vehicle in that lane
How?
Ok they'd send you one but I'd appeal and take it as far as necessary with a court. You did not jump the light, merely moved a few feet through it to get out of the way of an emergency vehicle. (or did you continue - in which case you took advantage from it and they probably do have a case?) Assuming you merely moved past the line and pulled across, as I have some several times over the years, I would refuse point blank to accept such an abuse of the penalty system and I imagine that the authorities would drop the charge if challenged anyway.
 


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