What is the police policy on pursuits?


2562 police vehicles OKThe Alice Springs News Online has asked the NT Police for details of its policy on pursuits of vehicles driven by suspected offenders.
This followed an experience yesterday afternoon by the newspaper’s editor, Erwin Chlanda.
He gave the following account to the police media unit: “I rode my bike on the South Stuart Highway south of The Gap early [yesterday] afternoon. Past Ilparpa Road it turns into an 80km/k zone and I was doing 80.
“The traffic was unusually heavy, both ways.
“Just south of Percy Road I noticed in my mirrors a grey sedan crossing the double lines, falling in behind me and then passing me on my left at a very high speed.
“The gap between me and that car, with several Aboriginal occupants, would have been less than a meter. I was in extreme danger.
“Then two police vehicles approached, sirens activated, behind me. I moved over to allow them past.
“They were following the sedan, as best I could see maintaining a distance of about 100 meters.
“It’s likely the sedan would not have engaged in driving that put a large number of road users at extreme risk had they not been chased.
“Under what circumstances are these risks considered to be worth taking?”
The media section is dealing with the report and we will update this story when details come to hand.
PHOTO from the police website: Police vehicles used in pursuits.
UPDATE July 23, 2018, 3pm
Police Superintendent Daniel Shean from the Road Policing, Firearms, East Arnhem and Airwing Division replied:–
The safety of all road users is a primary concern of the NT police force. Our officers have the safety of the public, victims, offenders and police in the forefront of their decision making processes when engaging in Emergency Vehicle Driving (EVD) and pursuit driving.
All instances of pursuit driving place an onerous duty on members that weighs heavily in favour of the need for prudence, restraint and the absolute commitment to the protection of life.
To that end, the police force has a general order that provides guidance and directions to police officers regarding pursuits.
In considering whether to engage in a pursuit, the police officer must consider a number of factors including (but not limited to) imminent danger and / or threat to the safety of any person, seriousness of the offence for which the occupants of the target vehicle are sought, including the protection of evidence and the level of risk the target vehicle would pose if it is not stopped or the pursuit is terminated.
Police officers engaging in pursuits must have relevant qualifications and in every pursuit, risk is continually assessed.
Drivers of police vehicles engaged in pursuits will often terminate the pursuit well before it is terminated by a supervisor on account of their continued assessment of the risks associated with the pursuit.
On this occasion, the risk was continually assessed and the pursuit resulted in the arrest of a number of persons.


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