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Sad times - assisting emergency service vehicle to pass not possible
Richard11
post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 17:27
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I was already waiting at a red light when the ambulance came around the corner behind me a few moments later. Despite the ambulance honking its horn, I chose not to make room by moving forwards even though it was safe to do so because I would have run a red light by a couple of meters.

I feel a little guilty blocking the ambulance even though it was only for maybe 10 few seconds until the lights changed back to green, but the law is the law ? highway code 219. It feels like a case of complying with the law to avoid potential prosecution, but not doing the right thing. Anyone else had a similar experience ?

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post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 17:27
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DancingDad
post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 17:31
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Yes
If it seems safe I've encroached the line as well, it may be me one day needing the help.
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Fredd
post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 18:24
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QUOTE (Richard11 @ Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 17:27) *
Despite the ambulance honking its horn, I chose not to make room by moving forwards even though it was safe to do so because I would have run a red light by a couple of meters.

The ambulance really, really shouldn't have been sounding its horn - they're meant to sit there with just the blues on until you can legally get out of the way, or use their own dispensation to (safely) manoeuvre around you/the lights.

Having said that, on the basis that the ambulance wouldn't be using blues & twos unless some poor sod urgently needed their help, if it was safe personally I'd have moved over the line, and had the argument afterwards if I did get a NIP. But then I don't have any points or need a clean licence, so it'd be easier for me than some others.


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andy_foster
post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 19:47
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QUOTE (Richard11 @ Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 17:27) *
<...>but the law is the law is the law ?


A tautology often somewhat ironically uttered by those that have little idea of what the law actually is.

QUOTE
highway code 219.


Dunno what that is off the top of my head, but it ain't "the law".

Where the simple principle of "the law is the law" often falls down is that it assumes that only a single statutory or common law provision applies to a given situation - in this case, s. 36 RTA 1988 - thou shalt not disobey prescribed traffic signs. However, s. 36 does not create an absolute offence. Defences of duress and duress of circumstances can apply (assuming that the facts of the case support them). As might the public interest test. If you plough into other traffic in order to allow an ambulance to pass, or otherwise do something similarly stupid, it would be difficult to defend, but if you reasonably believed that delaying an ambulance (particularly one which is actively indicating it's desire for you to get pout of its way) might create a risk of death or serious injury, and you do no more than is necessary to mitigate that risk, I would say that you have a sound defence.


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mickR
post Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 20:45
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Pretty sure there was a thread where someone was nip'd for doing exactly what the OP didn't. Think it was from a red light camera iirc
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Richard11
post Sat, 18 Nov 2017 - 11:53
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Andy - is there any need for the start of your comment be abrasive ? You're correct, I do not know the law, hence the question mark ? followed by the tautology (great word by the way!)

I do however thank you for quoting the RTA, and providing useful information towards the end of your response.
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andy_foster
post Sat, 18 Nov 2017 - 17:48
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It was a general comment, not aimed specifically at you, but if you want to feel offended, be my guest.


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Andy

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Incandescent
post Sat, 18 Nov 2017 - 22:11
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QUOTE
Where the simple principle of "the law is the law" often falls down is that it assumes that only a single statutory or common law provision applies to a given situation - in this case, s. 36 RTA 1988 - thou shalt not disobey prescribed traffic signs. However, s. 36 does not create an absolute offence. Defences of duress and duress of circumstances can apply (assuming that the facts of the case support them). As might the public interest test. If you plough into other traffic in order to allow an ambulance to pass, or otherwise do something similarly stupid, it would be difficult to defend, but if you reasonably believed that delaying an ambulance (particularly one which is actively indicating it's desire for you to get pout of its way) might create a risk of death or serious injury, and you do no more than is necessary to mitigate that risk, I would say that you have a sound defence.


So if "the law", (which for most people is the magistrates courts) is not an ass, as you seem to be saying, why has this forum had cases where people have moved forward to let an ambulance through, got a ticket and the magistrates have upheld it ?
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andy_foster
post Sat, 18 Nov 2017 - 23:48
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QUOTE (Incandescent @ Sat, 18 Nov 2017 - 22:11) *
So if "the law", (which for most people is the magistrates courts) is not an ass, as you seem to be saying, why has this forum had cases where people have moved forward to let an ambulance through, got a ticket and the magistrates have upheld it ?


If you would like to point out specific examples, I can offer an opinion on whether the court applied the law correctly to the facts of those cases.


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Andy

Millenial (noun): a person who is offended at being told "Suck it up, buttercup"
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Richard11
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 01:35
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Andy - we’re going to become best of friends, I see that now.
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Tartarus
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 21:06
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QUOTE (mickR @ Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 20:45) *
Pretty sure there was a thread where someone was nip'd for doing exactly what the OP didn't. Think it was from a red light camera iirc

Yep, first thing that sprung to mind as well, wasn't that long ago someone got red light NIP for encroaching when moving out the way for an ambulance.
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Incandescent
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 21:30
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QUOTE (Tartarus @ Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 21:06) *
QUOTE (mickR @ Fri, 17 Nov 2017 - 20:45) *
Pretty sure there was a thread where someone was nip'd for doing exactly what the OP didn't. Think it was from a red light camera iirc

Yep, first thing that sprung to mind as well, wasn't that long ago someone got red light NIP for encroaching when moving out the way for an ambulance.

Andy knows full well that there has been at least one post of this forum where somebody moved forward to let an ambulancde through, got a ticket from a red light camera, went to court and the penalty was upheld. Are magistrates just thick and stupid or were they misdirected in law ? Even if they were misdirected have they no back-bone at all ?
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andy_foster
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 21:41
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QUOTE (Incandescent @ Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 21:30) *
Andy knows full well that there has been at least one post of this forum where somebody moved forward to let an ambulancde through, got a ticket from a red light camera, went to court and the penalty was upheld. Are magistrates just thick and stupid or were they misdirected in law ? Even if they were misdirected have they no back-bone at all ?


Please don't tell me what I know.

I do not recall any such case, although that does not mean that there are no such cases. Perhaps you could point us to such a case, rather than making untrue statements?


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Incandescent
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 23:34
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http://www.pepipoo.com/forums/lofiversion/...php/t25519.html

http://www.pepipoo.com/forums/lofiversion/...php/t26757.html

http://forums.pepipoo.com/lofiversion/index.php/t70509.html

A few things here. I'm not sure whether they prove my point, though.
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andy_foster
post Sun, 19 Nov 2017 - 23:46
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2 pleaded guilty, and the other thread is merely a "will anything happen?".


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Millenial (noun): a person who is offended at being told "Suck it up, buttercup"
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Lodesman
post Mon, 20 Nov 2017 - 15:17
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This seems to cover much of what is being discussed.

https://youtu.be/btRHvQEIkcU

Make of it what you wish. Seems sensible advice to me.

This post has been edited by Lodesman: Mon, 20 Nov 2017 - 15:31
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Fredd
post Mon, 20 Nov 2017 - 15:24
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QUOTE (Lodesman @ Mon, 20 Nov 2017 - 15:17) *
This seems to cover much of what is being discussed.

It covers half of what's being discussed, anyway.


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DancingDad
post Mon, 20 Nov 2017 - 16:07
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Covers some of my pet hates on how people react when blues and twos appear.
Pulling over on blind bends and hills for one.
Why people do it beats me, the emergency drivers are usually good but not clairvoyant.
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Rallyman72
post Tue, 21 Nov 2017 - 13:17
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Sometimes there is no need to pull over and certainly no need to immediately stop. Carrying on will often get one to a wider bit of road or an opportunity to pull over. A bit of thought will help the emergency crew, lack of it can hinder them.


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Neil B
post Tue, 21 Nov 2017 - 15:36
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Quite liked the "don't overtake an emergency vehicle with blue lights"

Why ever not rolleyes.gif


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