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HomeMy WebLinkAbout0018 - Emergency Vehicle OperationRed Wing Police Department Policy SUBJECT: POLICY NUMBER • EMERGENCY VEHICLE OPERATION 18 EFFECTIVE DATE February 8, 2008 REFERENCE(S): APPROVED BY: CHIEF ROGER D. POHLMAN PURPOSE: The purpose of this policy is to provide the Red Wing Police Department Officers with information and guidelines on the use of police vehicles, while responding to emergency situations. POLICY: It is the responsibility of each officer to use due care in the response to emergencies. In consideration for the safety of both the officers and the public, it is imperative that officers respond at speeds that are reasonable and prudent. All members of this department who are operating vehicles in an official capacity shall be thoroughly familiar with all of the laws of the State of Minnesota which govern the operation of emergency vehicles and equipment. Officers must remember that the traffic law exemptions provided by state statute are contingent upon due regard for the safety of others. The courts have frequently interpreted this to mean that there is a higher burden of responsibility on a police officer as opposed to other drivers. 1. DEFINITIONS A. EMERGENCY VEHICLE OPERATION 1. Operation of an emergency vehicle in response to a call or situation which, by its nature, necessitates a reduced response time. Examples of such situations include but are not limited to: life threatening situations, burglaries in progress, armed robberies, substantial property loss and other incidents where a quick response may either protect human life or facilitate the apprehension of a perpetrator or suspected perpetrator. 2. GENERAL RULES Only police vehicles equipped with a siren and one or more red lights can be operated as an emergency vehicle. Both siren and red lights should be activated when operating as an emergency vehicle. It is recommended that headlamps also be on when operating as an emergency vehicle. Page 1 of 2 EMERGENCY VEHICLE OPERATION -POLICY 18 Unmarked police vehicles are not properly equipped to become involved in high speed situations and they shall not do so except when absolutely necessary in the performance of police duty. The speed limitations set forth in Minnesota Statute, Section 169.14 to 169.17, do not apply to authorized emergency vehicles when responding to emergency calls, but the drivers thereof should sound audible signal by siren and display at least one lighted red light to the front. State law does not relieve the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle from the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of persons using the streets. State law does not protect the driver of an authorized emergency vehicle from the consequences of reckless disregard of the safety of others. Page 2 of 2 EMERGENCY VEHICLE OPERATION -POLICY 18