To start off with I should mention that I am a Canberra Cabbie. As such it is not uncommon (actually quite often) that we get messages on our MTData system that start off with “POLICE MESSAGE……” followed by some stolen car, person of interest, item of interest etc that they want us to look out for. And fair enough too,,with 300+ cabbies on the road at any given time it makes sense to have those extra eyes looking for things when the Police obviously can’t be everywhere.
However, now I am asking myself “It it really worth it”? Last night around 2325 I was involved in an incident where I gave assistance and copped attitude.
I was driving westbound on Isabella Dr with an intention to turn left into Ashley Dr. About 100m away from the roundabout I saw a car enter that same roundabout southbound on Ashley Dr (i.e. Wanniassa to Richardson direction). As I watched this car it was obvious that control had been lost and the car had ended up in the guard rail on the wrong side of the road and was facing oncoming traffic.
I pulled up alongside that car turned my hazards on and offered whatever assistance was needed to the visibly shocked young female driver. Another member of the public who had gone through the roundabout before her also stopped and returned to offer assistance.
A police vehicle happened by carrying a male and female officer and stopped with associated lights show, got out and the first three questions from the male were;
1) Who was driving ?
2) Are you hurt ?
3) Were you speeding ?
The last question I answered with “No, she wasn’t. She got unlucky and found herself in a slide that she could not arrest. But speed was not a factor”
(NOTE: The roads were wet at the time and I am sure that the accident was caused more by inexperience in wet conditions, that coupled with the fact that the direction she was travelling in and being in the outside lane, its not the most user friendly roundabout).
The police went about doing their thing and I just stood back waiting for what I assumed would be a request for my details being a witness to the accident and being there when the police showed up. But no request came. What I got instead was this dialogue
Female Cop ” Were you involved in the accident”
Me ” No ”
Female Cop ” Okay, well you can go now ”
Female Cop ” Oh..but before you go. Is your car registered”
Me (knowing it was) ” I hope so” then “Yeah, see. (pointing to rego label) thats a 6. Its only May ”
Female Cop “oh okay then”
So what my point in all of this ?
1) I believe the police were trying to find something to pin someone with as soon as they got out of their vehicle. The crash victim by asking if she was speeding and me with a friggin rego
2) No requests for my details came from either officer even though I was a witness. And in talking with a mate who is a member of the AFP, he seems to think that she will possibly face a neg drive charge !!!
the quality, fact, or result of being negligent; neglect: negligence in discharging one’s responsibilities.
an instance of being negligent: a downfall brought about by many negligences.
Law. the failure to exercise that degree of care that, in the circumstances, the law requires for the protection of other persons or those interests of other persons that may be injuriously affected by the want of such care.
3) The attitude from the female police officer towards me. Rather than a “thanks for stopping and offering your assistance” I was told in a gruff manner that my presence was no longer required and oh by the way,,is your car registered. Her observational awareness is lacking it would seem.
4) Is helping the police going to make you feel better about them in general and give you warm fuzzies, or is it going to make you wonder why the blood hell you bothered in the first place when all you get in return is attitude. I think this female officers ‘bedside manner’ could be improved somewhat.
Anyway, before any one suggests I do. I have dried my eyes and Hardened TFU !!