Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Topics relating to Advanced Driving in cars
JohnP
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby JohnP » Tue Sep 20, 2016 5:27 pm

ancient wrote:Police driver is sitting waving his hands and shouting, passenger the same. It took 3 - 4 minutes before they realised they could overtake inside safely). I've had an ambulance driver sit way too close behind on twisty country lanes with no opportunity to overtake and making it harder for me to safely pull over. When I found a wider section to pull out of the way.

This reminds me of when I was driving through an unfamiliar multi-lane gyratory. I knew I needed the right hand lane so was keeping to the right. The traffic was light. I heard and saw a police car approaching fast from behind. I continued to indicate right and moved to the right of the lane and slowed down, expecting the police car to overtake on the left. It pulled up behind me. I slowed more, it was now close behind me: for a moment I thought it was me they wanted (I couldn't think what I may have done). After a while I saw the driver gesticulating for me to move to the left. I did: and it sped past.

Rolyan
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby Rolyan » Tue Sep 20, 2016 5:52 pm

mainbeam wrote:By the way, I would not interpret a toot of the horn as an instruction to get out of the way but if clearly instructed to do so would not obstruct an officer in the course of his duty knowing thst he had the power under the common law to instruct me to disobey a traffic regulation safely, that it is a defence to the red light offence and I would not be prosecuted and certainly not convicted.

I congratulate you in changing the way youve phrased your comments; your volte-face is worthy of any politician. However, if this allows you to save face and move on then that can only be a good thing.

At last, you are now, finally, agreeing with everyone else on here. But I fear that Michael is no longer with us!!! But since you now agree with everyone else that a) if you cross a red light due to a police toot then it IS an offence and b) if you cross a red light due to a correct direction from Police controlling traffic then it ISNT an offence, I hope the debate will centre around the moral question, which was behind Michaels initial post.

mainbeam
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby mainbeam » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:29 pm

akirk wrote:
mainbeam wrote:By the way, I would not interpret a toot of the horn as an instruction to get out of the way but if clearly instructed to do so would not obstruct an officer in the course of his duty knowing thst he had the power under the common law to instruct me to disobey a traffic regulation safely, that it is a defence to the red light offence and I would not be prosecuted and certainly not convicted.


I think this is the point everyone has been making all along :)


Not quite as I can see no reason as to why an instruction to get out of the way cannot be made by the Police driver from behind.

akirk wrote:[If clearly instructed by a constable of course you would do as required, and it would be a valid defence in court...
but - that clear instruction will not and can not come from a constable in a car behind you as it is physically not possible for a constable in such a position to have a full grasp of the traffic situation and to therefore give safe / accurate instructions...

Alasdair


Apart from Gareth who appears to be well behind the curve we seem to be catching up with the point being made. I don't see any basis in the case law for the assertion that an instruction cannot be clear because the Police officer isn't in a position to have a full grasp of the traffic situation. It is also illogical. That would of course apply under the statutory defence of "being engaged in the direction of traffic" but there is nothing in the case law to support your view. (I note from the ADUK website that a Police officer posted a reference to the same case law as I have so at least one of them is aware of it):)

Although there is a duty to move out of the way of a Police officer when instructed to do so that duty only applies when it is safe to do so. There is nothing in the case law to prevent a Police officer from instructing a driver to move out of the way and the driver, quite lawfully, refusing because he is not satisfied that it is safe to do so. That is distinct from the driver refusing to move because he wrongly believes it is an offence to cross the line.

You appear to be twisting this into the instruction not being an instruction because the question as to safety cannot be ascertained by the Police officer from his position.

The Police driver may have to rely on your assessment of safety to some extent just as you will have to rely on his assessment that he is 'protecting life, limb or property'.

I might add that with advanced stop lines the situations in which a Police officer can have a sufficient view to assess the safety of crossing the line than are more frequent than may have previously been the case.

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akirk
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby akirk » Wed Sep 21, 2016 2:42 pm

the same case law specified / acknowledged that a police office in instructing a motorist could not ask them to do something dangerous...

exactly how would an office sitting in a car behind the OP at the traffic lights ascertain whether or not they are requesting something dangerous or not? Sorry, this is now getting into semantics...
- it has been made abundantly clear that no police office is trained to request a motorist to move from within their car behind
- it has been clarified that training for Blues & Twos is clear and says they should turn them off so as not to imply to the motorist an instruction to move through red lights
- it has been confirmed from a number of sources that it is illegal in that situation to go through a red light unless specifically instructed (but you won't be)
- it has been clarified that the case law quoted is a different scenario and doesn't set precedent / create common law or case law for this scenario
- it has been noted that in addition in that case it was clarified that a constable could not request you to do something dangerous...

sorry, there is really no way that a constable a) should direct you in that situation b) expect you to move c) that you have a defence in law - you don't

if the constable gets out - and controls the situation to reduce danger and then directs you fine - but that has nothing to do with the scenario being discussed...

it is not logical to say x in this scenario (one way streets / ambulances / etc.) means x in another scenario (red light and police car behind) it doesn't and there is really no basis for saying that it does...

you can quote as much as you like about protecting life / limb / property etc. - just so totally not relevant outside the context of the rest of the UK law
just as a constable can't ask you to murder someone to protect life / limb / property so equally they can not ask you to break other laws for that purpose unless the setting fits under accepted scenarios (control of traffic / clarity of instruction / minimisation of danger / etc.) and in that case it did, in this case it doesn't

Alasdair

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GTR1400MAN
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby GTR1400MAN » Wed Sep 21, 2016 3:43 pm

akirk wrote:you can quote as much as you like about protecting life / limb / property etc. - just so totally not relevant outside the context of the rest of the UK law
just as a constable can't ask you to murder someone to protect life / limb / property so equally they can not ask you to break other laws for that purpose unless the setting fits under accepted scenarios (control of traffic / clarity of instruction / minimisation of danger / etc.) and in that case it did, in this case it doesn't

Reminds me of :) ...

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Mike Roberts

JohnP
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby JohnP » Wed Sep 21, 2016 5:47 pm

akirk wrote:I totally fail to understand how a police driver could instruct you from inside his / her car - other than via esp...
Alasdair

I remember police cars had loud-hailers (I remember one behind my father in the 1960's saying "Police car behind. Check your speed".
Last edited by Mr Cholmondeley-Warner on Wed Sep 21, 2016 8:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Fix quote markers

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akirk
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby akirk » Wed Sep 21, 2016 7:38 pm

JohnP wrote:
akirk wrote:I totally fail to understand how a police driver could instruct you from inside his / her car - other than via esp...
Alasdair

I remember police cars had loud-hailers (I remember one behind my father in the 1960's saying "Police car behind. Check your speed".


:D fantastic - but I am sure that 'I wouldn't be able to hear them'

surely now they should simply send you a text :)
Alasdair
Last edited by Mr Cholmondeley-Warner on Wed Sep 21, 2016 8:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

fungus
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby fungus » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:42 pm

mainbeam wrote:
akirk wrote:
mainbeam wrote:By the way, I would not interpret a toot of the horn as an instruction to get out of the way but if clearly instructed to do so would not obstruct an officer in the course of his duty knowing thst he had the power under the common law to instruct me to disobey a traffic regulation safely, that it is a defence to the red light offence and I would not be prosecuted and certainly not convicted.


I think this is the point everyone has been making all along :)


Not quite as I can see no reason as to why an instruction to get out of the way cannot be made by the Police driver from behind.

akirk wrote:[If clearly instructed by a constable of course you would do as required, and it would be a valid defence in court...
but - that clear instruction will not and can not come from a constable in a car behind you as it is physically not possible for a constable in such a position to have a full grasp of the traffic situation and to therefore give safe / accurate instructions...

Alasdair


Apart from Gareth who appears to be well behind the curve we seem to be catching up with the point being made. I don't see any basis in the case law for the assertion that an instruction cannot be clear because the Police officer isn't in a position to have a full grasp of the traffic situation. It is also illogical. That would of course apply under the statutory defence of "being engaged in the direction of traffic" but there is nothing in the case law to support your view. (I note from the ADUK website that a Police officer posted a reference to the same case law as I have so at least one of them is aware of it):)

Although there is a duty to move out of the way of a Police officer when instructed to do so that duty only applies when it is safe to do so. There is nothing in the case law to prevent a Police officer from instructing a driver to move out of the way and the driver, quite lawfully, refusing because he is not satisfied that it is safe to do so. That is distinct from the driver refusing to move because he wrongly believes it is an offence to cross the line.

You appear to be twisting this into the instruction not being an instruction because the question as to safety cannot be ascertained by the Police officer from his position.

The Police driver may have to rely on your assessment of safety to some extent just as you will have to rely on his assessment that he is 'protecting life, limb or property'.

I might add that with advanced stop lines the situations in which a Police officer can have a sufficient view to assess the safety of crossing the line than are more frequent than may have previously been the case.


Move out of the way is one thing when you are not required to break the law. Cross a stop line on a red light, no. It is an offence for any part of your vehicle to cross a stop line on a red light unless instructed to do so by a uniformed officer directing traffic.

I think you'll find that Police/emergency service vehicle drivers will use their own assessment of safety, not Joe publics.

Nigel.

mainbeam
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby mainbeam » Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:38 pm

akirk wrote:the same case law specified / acknowledged that a police office in instructing a motorist could not ask them to do something dangerous...


it didn't. It stated that the motorist was not bound to comply with the instruction unless it was safe to break the traffic regulation. Whether or not it is safe is a matter of objective fact not the opinion of the Police officer. This isn't semantics. You want the case law to read as enactment. It doesn't work like that. Johnson v Phillips is clear authority for the proposition that a Police officer can require a motorist not to comply with a traffic regulation - if it safe to do so - under his common law power to control traffic - (not "for the time being engaged in the regulation of traffic' as per the legislation.

For the purpose of the common law it matters not whether the Police officer is in front of you, behind you, or swinging from a tree above you.

If you had never read the legislation or endless and tedious discussions on the internet around the legislation I don't think you would be struggling to grasp this.

Why should driving the wrong way down a one-way street be distinguished - in law - from driving over the stop line of a red light? Obviously they are not identical but that isn't how case law works. You need a good reason. I can't find one but I am open to arguments for one.
Last edited by mainbeam on Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

mainbeam
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Re: Blues and Twos and Traffic Lights

Postby mainbeam » Fri Sep 23, 2016 9:46 pm

fungus wrote: Cross a stop line on a red light, no. It is an offence for any part of your vehicle to cross a stop line on a red light unless instructed to do so by a uniformed officer directing traffic..


Not necessarily. That's the point being made in Johnson v Phillips :)

As above. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

The advanced driving community's understanding of the law is limited to what it can read in the legislation which is published on the internet hence an incorrect and response by its members when confronted by a Police officer instructing them to move out of his way when in order to do so it is necessary to cross the 'stop' line at a red light and it is safe to do so.


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