1. #1
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    Default Fury over 159mph British cop

    COCKY PC Mark Milton points a speed gun in a snap taken after HE was clocked at 159mph in a cop car.

    Amazingly, a judge let the 38-year-old traffic policeman off scot free yesterday, saying he presented no danger to other road users.

    And it proved there is one rule for police and another for every other motorist, furious protesters said last night.

    They BLASTED PC Milton, who roared around for an hour on a test drive, often exceeding 100mph.

    And they LASHED district judge Bruce Morgan, who yesterday cleared the cop of dangerous driving and five speeding charges.

    The protesters included the RAC, road safety groups and dad Brian Stevens, whose 12-year-old daughter Sadie lost a leg when she was hit by a police car on a crossing.

    Brian, 52, of Birmingham, called the PC Milton case a “joke”. And he said: “The idea this man can commit these speeds and walk free is unbelievable. There is one rule for us and one for the police.”

    The RAC’s Philip Hale said “most ordinary motorists” would interpret the case the same way as Mr Stevens.

    Grade 1 advanced driver PC Milton tested a souped-up cop car — a 3.2 litre Vauxhall Vectra GSi — just after midnight around Telford, Shropshire, where he is based.

    He had not driven it before and was “familiarising” himself with its handling so he would know how to use it safely in an emergency.

    An on-board camera recorded he hit 159mph on the M54 and was still doing 120mph as he came off on a slip road.

    He reached 125mph on the A41, 137mph on the A5 and even did 100mph on a minor road, the B5060.

    The traffic cop was prosecuted by his own West Mercia force after a colleague examined the camera.

    But Judge Morgan, sitting in Ludlow, ruled he had not posed a threat to pedestrians or other motorists.

    He said “skilled” PC Milton, a married dad, was driving when most people were in bed.

    He added: “He knew very few people would be on the road. In fact, the roads were utterly deserted.”

    The judge said he fully accepted police drivers had to practise their skills. And they should do so “in conditions similar to what they face on operational duties”.

    But the RAC’s Mr Hale said: “When would an officer have to drive that fast on operational duties?”

    Mary Williams, head of road safety group Brake, said: “Police should not be showing other drivers how to flout the law.”

    The judge DID rap PC Milton’s bosses for failing to properly regulate driver training, saying they had “a total lack of policy”.

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    PC MILTON left court with a big smirk on his face and prepared to read a statement.

    But he suddenly changed his mind and refused to comment.

    The officer had been furious when told he was being prosecuted by his own force.

    At a hearing last month, he told how he wanted to get to grips with the car so that he would know how to drive it safely in an emergency.

    He said: “I was always told that when you drive a vehicle for the first time, even if you pick a vehicle you are used to driving, you should familiarise yourself with the vehicle and its handling characteristics.

    “At no time did I consider that anybody would be at jeopardy, given that, even on advanced courses whilst still a student under instruction, I was being encouraged to drive at speeds greater than 145mph on motorways.”

    Police Federation representative Inspector Keith Howes, also based in Telford, backed the bobby.

    He said: “It was the right result and it now means that PC Milton can take his life off hold.”

    But Kevin Clinton, of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, said: “We don’t believe 159mph can EVER be justified on public roads

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    Default Re: Fury over 159mph British cop

    Originally posted by pengman
    But Judge Morgan, sitting in Ludlow, ruled he had not posed a threat to pedestrians or other motorists.

    He said “skilled” PC Milton, a married dad, was driving when most people were in bed.

    He added: “He knew very few people would be on the road. In fact, the roads were utterly deserted.”

    The judge said he fully accepted police drivers had to practise their skills. And they should do so “in conditions similar to what they face on operational duties”.
    so does that mean I can take my new car on the road at night, and drive 150 mph, so I can "practice my skills"? I have EVOC, and at 2am, the roads are pretty much deserted. and just think there might be times when i need to drive like that "in conditions similar to what they face on operational duties."

    Sorry judge, you made the wrong call here, and demonstrated that the police and public have to follow different rules.

    on a side note, I've driven my POV (well, actually my mom's minivan when I was moving my stuff home from school) at 2am on the intersate. and I got to say, at 110, the straightaways are ok, but any turns and you can feel like you are losing control. no good. I can't imagine what 150mph is like.
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    Thumbs down Mountains Out Of Molehills.....................

    Or, as another famous British subject once said "Much ado about nothing". So a cop went out and blew the carbon out of his patrol car. Big deal. My 96' Crown Vic would go 140, which is fast enough for a Fire Chief, most of the time anyway. I just don't see the problem with driving fast. Anywhere. There are a huge pile of things out there for the worrywarts to pee and moan about, speed doesn't need to be one of them.
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    England measures speed in miles per hour? I thought it was kph.

    If that's true and the speed was 150 kph, that equates to something like 100mph. Still pretty fast, but a big difference.

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    My two cents (and that's all they're worth)...

    I have no problem with a cop opening the cruiser up on an empty interstate or freeway after midnight, so long as he does it with due regard for any other drivers he may encounter. We don't exactly have a lot of race tracks for cops to practise driving at those speeds on. As for the comment about it not being necessary for police to drive at 145 mph. Get your head out of your ***. This was Britain, home to some of the finest domestic and imported sports cars in the world. I have personally seen amateur dash video from a yahoo doing 200+mph in a Ferrari F40 on a British freeway.

    The side roads I'm not sure I'm comfortable with, but I would have to see the situation to pass judgement (and I'll admit I'm not qualified to pass judgment anyway).

    But this guy could be a total tool as well, and the department may have been trying to use this as a way to get rid of a bad apple. We don't know the whole story.
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    Default And the point is?

    I have personally clocked 70 mph in a Turntable Ladder-all up weight 14 ton+.
    Responding to a call out on H21 Bromleys ground-this was in the mid 70's.

    Again early hours of the morning-Blues(no two's) and not a solitary soul in sight.Downhill gradient heading towards Catford.

    My stopping distance would be a hell of a lot longer than a modern car.

    You had to be aware that the Brigade had cornered the market in special "Fade Prone" brakes--if you drove to the speed of the brakes,the job would have got to "Burn out" stage before you arrived.

    One of the adverts for some of the cars in the 70's was "0-100mph and stop in 10 seconds"

    I would anticipate it has got less by now.
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    Originally posted by Steamer
    England measures speed in miles per hour? I thought it was kph.

    If that's true and the speed was 150 kph, that equates to something like 100mph. Still pretty fast, but a big difference.

    Where's the "Boyz from Britain" when ya needs 'em?!
    England is MPH and drive on the left side of the road. Canada is KMPH (because we wanted to be different)!
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    Big deal. My 96' Crown Vic would go 140, which is fast enough for a Fire Chief, most of the time anyway. I just don't see the problem with driving fast. Anywhere. There are a huge pile of things out there for the worrywarts to pee and moan about, speed doesn't need to be one of them.
    You've lost your damn mind.

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    Talking

    The British police train their pursuit drivers to an exceptionally high standard, they have to be capable of driving at very high speeds for long periods of time,part of their training is driving along the motorways at really high speeds. I would say that the Metropolitan Police drivers are among the best in the whole of Europe. And yes, its still miles per hour. At one time a study was done to see if it was viable to change from driving on the left to driving on the right to bring the UK into line with the rest of Europe, it was decided that the cost would be too prohibitive, and changing all the road signs etc would have been a nightmare.

    As toand from says, the brakes on the fire apparatus left a lot to be desired, I well remember driving the Dennis F8, top speed around 65 mph, from top speed to getting down to a safe enough speed to take a corner once took me around about 300 yards, scared the s**t out of me!!

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    Default Other side

    ProtoMk-You must have heard that they tried to introduce the "drive on the right" in Ireland?

    They decided to do it gradually--all heavy goods and buses did it Mondays, Wednesday. and Friday- and the rest of the traffic did it on Tuesday,Thursday and Saturdays.

    Apparently they gave up after only one week. Too bloody dangerous
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    As the other Brits have already posted, and not to flog the dead horse, most of the prople I have spoken to have no problem with the cops running about at this sort of speed. My full time job as a police dispatcher involves managing pursuits, which are governed by nationally laid down guidelines in the their conduct and require the driving skills of the police officers who are involved in them to be "of the highest standard". Not much point in only being prepared, or able to drive at 70mph, when the person you are trying to stop is doing 100...

    On a slightly different note, the UK's police forces provide "blood runs" for the National Blood Service, when quantities of blood are required urgently in different parts of the country, and are transported from force to force, by patrol vehicles. We also provide this service for transplant hospitals, taking organs from one place to another, which in most cases are very time critical. Again this sort of undertaking requires the police officer to drive at the maximum safe permitted speed for the preavailing conditions.

    Police officers, as firefighters, are called upon at a moments notice to display all the skills they possess, and in the case of this, need to be aware that the vehicle they are driving can do what it needs to when called upon.
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    Default Re: Mountains Out Of Molehills.....................

    Originally posted by hwoods
    Or, as another famous British subject once said "Much ado about nothing". So a cop went out and blew the carbon out of his patrol car. Big deal. My 96' Crown Vic would go 140, which is fast enough for a Fire Chief, most of the time anyway. I just don't see the problem with driving fast. Anywhere. There are a huge pile of things out there for the worrywarts to pee and moan about, speed doesn't need to be one of them.

    I agree fully H, especially with the current epidemic breakdown in Law and Order in the UK...although conversely, there is an uproar in the UK with speed camera's popping up everywhere (They have been in about 12 years and were originally for accident blackspots) but a change in the law means Police forces can put them anywhere and keep the Fines...£60 ($120) and Three Penalty Points....

    To focus this a little bit, I have just received another 'automated speeding fine' (33mph on a destered road at 11am on a saturday) through the post. My third in Two years. I have had a few more come through, but I have proved I was responding to an Incident on blue lights at the time...(one was actually in a marked FD car while my own was in for a service).

    If I get one more I will be on a ban!!! And believe me I am no hot-rodding kid with a Custom car. Just a regular 36 YO Fire Officer with a House and 2.4 Kids!!!!

    There is uproar about the whole speeding thing here... Old people, young mums, are being caught out by arbitary fines and points for going 33 in a 30 zone...54 in a 50 zone etc...

    That is why it has made such a big deal over here... one rule for them...one rule for the rest of us!!!! This comes on the basck of a few more 100+mph Police 'lets offs' this year.
    Last edited by SteveDude; 05-21-2005 at 05:37 PM.
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    Default Re: Mountains Out Of Molehills.....................

    JUst to add the problem here is nothing to do with Police Officers... they are going to be 'got at' if they get off of stuff. It is with the Police Authorities... When you got caught in a 'good old' speeding trap, the Police Officer used his discretion and often used the video just as a demonstration of how fast you were going and give a caution.

    Now, the Uniformed experienced officer is out of the loop and a spotty 17yo Office worker just prints of the digital film, gets your details from the Police National Computer and sticks the fine in an envelope!!!
    Last edited by SteveDude; 05-21-2005 at 05:44 PM.
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    Default Pain threshold

    Originally posted by protomkv
    The British police train their pursuit drivers to an exceptionally high standard, they have to be capable of driving at very high speeds for long periods of time,part of their training is driving along the motorways at really high speeds. I would say that the Metropolitan Police drivers are among the best in the whole of Europe. And yes, its still miles per hour. At one time a study was done to see if it was viable to change from driving on the left to driving on the right to bring the UK into line with the rest of Europe, it was decided that the cost would be too prohibitive, and changing all the road signs etc would have been a nightmare.

    As toand from says, the brakes on the fire apparatus left a lot to be desired, I well remember driving the Dennis F8, top speed around 65 mph, from top speed to getting down to a safe enough speed to take a corner once took me around about 300 yards, scared the s**t out of me!!
    Just to reiterate your braking experience, Protomkv--one particular time I turned out at the witching hour(0100-0400 ish) could not find my shoes--I have deep suspicion it was a probie who thought it was funny to kick them 50 feet down the dorm--and tried to drive a Dennis 101 in stocking feet --never again! Solid steel pedals with raised pointy anti slip pattern are not exactly the most comfortable setup--it had to be done cos as most of you LFB bods know you are virtually on top of your jobs.
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    Here in RI the police can, but usually don't, have your car towed if you are stopped doing more than 15MPH over the speed limit. The fine is usually 10 dollars for every mile over the posted speed up to 15 miles over and 15 dollars per mile for anything over 15 miles above. What was the posted speed limit on the road he was traveling 157? Why don't they fine him what John Q Public would be fined if stopped at that speed? I'll bet it would be around if not more than 1,000 bucks.

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    Just to add another side to this story. PC Miltons 83 year old father was convicted of speeding last week, after being caught doing 38 miles per hour in a 30mph zone. After receiving his ticket, Mr Milton Snr said his son should never have been taken to court over his use of his Police vehicle and that he accepted he was in the wrong over his speeding offence.
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    I recall a story in Car and Driver a few years ago. It involved a ridealong with South African police that were doing 235+ kph (145+ mph) in a pursuit, while the passenger officer was shooting an MP5 out the window at the fleeing carjacker.

    Just because the speed seems ludicrous to us in North America doesn't mean it is..
    --jay.

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    "and tried to drive a Dennis 101 in stocking feet --never again! Solid steel pedals with raised pointy anti slip pattern are not exactly the most comfortable setup--"

    ToandFrom. I know how you must have felt, tried to do that myself. But all in all, the Dennis 101 was one of the best machines to drive.

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