Traffic Cops Told Not To Chase Criminals

Mon 7th Feb 2022

The UK’s dwindling numbers of traffic police have seen their capabilities reduced even further after a national directive was issued for them not to get involved in high-speed pursuits.

Police forces across the country have told their traffic officers not exceed the speed limit, with safety concerns that the high-powered BMW vehicles could burst into flames.

The Northern Echo newspaper has revealed that Durham Police are now operating a ‘no pursuit’ policy, and it is a problem which is likely to be repeated at forces elsewhere in the UK.

The National Police Chiefs’ Council have confirmed that they are investigating an issue with their vehicles, with Deputy Chief Constable Terry Woods, who leads the police driving at the organisation saying: “Chief Constables are working with the National Association of Police Fleet Managers to examine any risks.

“We are aware there may be an issue with some older vehicles in our fleet and we are taking urgent steps to ensure this is addressed, including offering guidance to forces.

“Our priority at this time is to ensure the safety and the long-term integrity of the equipment our officers use.”

The ban could be related to the death of PC Nick Dumphreys in 2020, who was killed after his police vehicle, a BMW, caught fire during a 999 call in Cumbria.

Speaking to the Northern Echo, a Durham Police spokesperson said:  “We are aware of a reported problem affecting some police vehicles across the country and have already taken steps to ensure the safety of both our officers and the public, including a review of our fleet to ensure that any potential issues are swiftly identified and addressed.

“Durham Constabulary remain confident that service delivery will be maintained while this review is being carried out.”