In reply to A.F.D. French (“Police Methods”), I would first like to ask him to stick to his own job and refrain from indicating to other people how they should do theirs.
I was not the driver of the police car ALM 730B, but I have met many “drivers” who are all too ready to write that vicious letter, “not really meaning to cause trouble,” and I think that all other police drivers are aware of that type. We always have a legal excuse, consequently A.F.D. F. is wasting his paper and time.
After 8 to 10 hours a day patrolling “A” and “M” class roads and watching the pitiful incompetence of 90% of the drivers on those roads, attending up to 30 “injury” accidents a month, picking up maimed limp bodies of young children after accidents, police drivers do not go at speed for fun. To me at least it is a deadly serious business, driving through the ranks of unguided missiles the drivers of which have reactions and initiative comparable with a corpse.
It only “appeared” to A.F.D. French that the driver of the Mini was booked. I very much doubt that he was. Incidentally, what was archangel French doing pacing the two vehicles. Apart from exceeding the speed limit himself, his insurance does not cover him for pacing speeding motor vehicles.
Radar is not unreliable but cases are sometimes badly prosecuted. Unless the radar beam picks up an isolated vehicle it will not register at all. The set also refuses to register if there are vehicles going in the opposite direction and passing through the beam at the same time as the offending vehicle. Vehicles pass through the beam before they reach the radar set, and a properly positioned set does not give even the most alert driver time to pull his foot off the accelerator. We do not operate on a percentage basis; what is the point of victimising the poor downtrodden motorist. I must pause at this point, as I am crying in my beer.
If the police were to report every offence on the roads, courts operating for 24 hours a day, six days a week, would not be able to cope with the cases and A. F. D. would not turn a wheel.
The least offending of the motoring public and the ones least likely to be found the offending party in a road accident are the true enthusiasts, not those who use a good magazine as a soap-box for stirring up trouble for particular individuals.
As a keen V.S.C.C. member and motorist, I thoroughly enjoy Motor Sport, but this time I just had to kick out for my profession.
“Traffic Patrol, Lancs.”
[Name and address supplied.—Ed.]
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