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a tale of prejudice
evening chaps, THIS is going to be a long one, if you get bored im sorry.
thought Id share a interesting recent episode of a encounter with west yorkshire police/ get some s**t off my chest.
on sunday gone, I spent most of the day bored at Alton towers due to power failure, but made up for it getting as soaking wet as possible, it was raining anyway.
I drove to bradford later on around 8pm and dropped a colleague off, myself and a remaining colleague then got food and drove to wakefield to eat before departing to Penrith aiming to arrive at midnight.
On exiting Bradford (wakefield road?) a dual laned road 30mph turning 40mph with roundabouts it had been raining for sometime, I should note i was travelling in my daily 1litre engined old polo.
I braked for a oncoming roadabout knowing the canal boat of a polo cant tolerate speed in a straight line not to mention a corner, i entered the dual lane roundabout at 25mph, the exit lane was not straight over more 1oclock. mid corner the car violently oversteer aquaplaned across both lanes, i corrected the drift only to find a volvo cop car on the exit.
next thing Im pulled over, takeaway sauce spilt on my carpet and my colleague scared of what had happened, after checking she was ok, the police man came to the window asked me to step out the vehicle, which i did.
I was then introduced to his colleague, whom asked me one question 'What has just happened?' I began to answer stating the vehicle lost grip and for no known obvious reason I can explain other than poor weather... I got about three words in before the officer whom asked the question decided he had heard enough.
the interupted response was:
''I have been a police emergancy traffic scene Investigator for 24years, your vehicle is front wheel drive, there is only one thing that has happened here, you have come into the roundabout and pulled the handbrake''
I tried to wait for a pause to explain my innocence but I was again interrupted by the officer whom decided to lecture me on momentum and physics and the difference between his volvo my polo, front wheel drive vs rear wheel drive and how I am a young male whom is out to have some fun....
at no point was I allowed to speak, I am a healthcare Professional and therefore cant accept cautions for my proffesional ability to practice in community. I was told I would face a court hearing, loose my licence and career for dangerous driving, wreckless behaviour and other offences he added to the bill.
I have always learnt to keep quiet and understand situations where you can defend yourself can make them worse so I rejected the caution, to which I was told I was a prat, young and foolish. when i turned to his colleague he had nothing to say, I made one comment that I had don nothing wrong and wasnt sure what had happened to which I was confronted and told how again I was young and had entered the roundabout with the sole intention of handbrake turnng a 1litre polo in wet conditions and other traffic on the road around me. He re itterated the judge will hear his evidence and take my licence and further charges affecting my career and livelyhood.
I was so shocked i had nothing to say, I got back in my car after being dissmissed and noticed a P zone ahead 100yards, i pulled off and then immediately pulled in.
5mins later the cop car returned and asked me to get out the vehicle, I got out and then the 'main officer' invited me into his car saying 'Get in!' in a nasty tone not looking at me.
he then told me he and his colleague had decided to go on a trip round the roundabout at 40mph and they hadnt skidded... again I said nothing, he then told me he had changed his mind and dropped the charge this time but would hold me on file.
In one turn of a roundabout where I had done nothing to cause what had occurred but resulted in a slide led to me almost loosing my career and livelyhood, without even being able to speak.
I have since not driven my .R
the tyres where new on the car (<100miles all four maxxis)
the fact: I had braked suitably, being over cautious due to my colleague passenger, Im still at a loss as to what caused the slide, Im aware its a terrible handling car but i use it daily and drive it well within safe limits, theres no point doing any faster driving as i chase economy to save for hooning in the .R
all in all im furious and it spoilt my holiday in the lake district.
sorry for boring you, had to get it off my chest somewhere.
Surely you can complain about the officers involved ? This is what REEEEEALLY pees me off about the majority of traffic cops (there are some decent ones out there before anyone rips me to shreds) in that most of them are amongst the most patronising people on the planet, there was absolutely no need for the way they've talked to you and their tone.
As for them trying the same manoeuvre on the roundabout, well, of course a 4WD Volvo isn't going to react the same as a skinny wheeled FWD Polo - surely they're sharp enough to realise that.
I wouldn't let it put you off for one minute though from driving the .R, it's there to enjoy, just use it on some quiter roads Hugh
Sometimes it feels like the police are just out to get someone.
I remember years ago (in a polo) a copper on a motorbike overtook me and then slowed down. I stuck to the speed limit and passed him on the approach to a round about.
He then pulled me over for speeding! Even though he could not prove it. After arguing my case with him, he said by the way you have a break light out and walked off!
You pulled the hand brake didn't you?!?
God damn street racers!
I'll look after the R for you Hugh until you feel the time is right to enjoy it again! Seriously though, It sounds to me like you had some bad luck, first the slide then the misfortune to come across a copper with an attitude problem. This doesn't however excuse the guys behaviour and I would be considering taking the matter furthur.
Did you note their numbers down?
Maxxis in the wet.....mixed reviews in wet weather.
Chin up, no point not enjoying what you can, life's tough enough so get back in those buckets!!
Back when I'd just started driving I oversteered and span (3 times) my old 1litre Swift on a really wet roundabout.
I managed to drift it back off the exit I wanted anyway but I learned a valuable lesson that night about how small, light cars with skinny tyres react in the wet, with lift off oversteer.
I wish I had a video of mine, it would have looked amazing! Haha.
At the end of the day the reason he dropped it is because he knew he had nothing, the CPS won't accept a motoring offence unless they have evidence; 2 officers opinions are enough but if the first wasn't willing to swear in court that there was no doubt in his mind you pulled the handbrake he had nothing. He was doing what most try to and that is scare you into accepting the caution then and there. You did the right thing. He must have felt a right prat to his mate :-)
There's a roundabout at the Trafford centre that in the wet even at about 10/15 mph you will understeer, the oil on the road over time has just made it unbearable.
Unfortunate really, did you get his number? Should have gone toe to toe with him other than keep quiet really,viewing you stand there all quiet probably made him feel all powerful and feel like he was educating you if that makes sense.
Wrong. The CPS will run with anything that they believe has a realistic chance of prosecution and is 'in the public interest'. I see both sides of the coin. I see the CPS not running with stuff when by rights they should after I've collected a shed load of verifiable evidence, but I have also been in court where it was one (very arsey) single crewed traffic officer who didn't like it when I questioned him on his driving after he'd given me the patronising bull, trying to stitch me up for 95mph in a 60mph (ban and loss of job). His statement was full of holes that I picked apart, but CPS STILL decided it was worth a punt in court. In the end I accepted 3 points and a fine for 70mph in a 60mph because there was a chance it could have gone against me in court.
Originally Posted by trismotteram
To the OP - it sounds like he was trying to scare you in to 'correcting' your driving behaviour, albeit it's a really crappy way of doing it. As for him saying you will go 'on file' - rubbish, and not worth worrying about. No one goes 'on file' unless he submits an intel report (you weren't arrested so you won't be on the custody system or PNC), but as there really is nothing from what you've said to put on an IMS submission then I wouldn't worry about it. Bear in mind that his colleagues will have to work with him and that he is probably like that with everyone. I work with people who love winding people up to get a reaction - believe me, I don't like crewing up with these people, and neither do a lot of other colleagues, as they drag us in to situations we don't need to be in.
Going toe to toe even when you're in the right doesn't always work out.
A good traffic officer can find things wrong with even a well maintained car, let alone even a 'good' driver's driving (washer fluid not filled to the brim, just one bulb out, missed an indication one time, cut a painted mini roundabout slightly etc.)
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