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Mana Whanonga Pirihimana Motuhake

Investigation into crash caused by officer executing a U-turn

6 October 2021

The Authority oversaw a Police investigation into an incident on 11 August 2020 when a patrol car was involved in a crash on SH1 in Dunedin. The officer was travelling south on SH1 when he noticed a car travelling at speed in the opposite direction, so he decided to execute a U-turn and pursue the car. He activated his red and blue lights and looked in his rear-view mirror. He saw a car, but misjudged it's distance from him. As he carried out the U-turn, the car struck the patrol car in the right passenger's door area. The driver of the other car in the collision admitted to driving above the speed limit before the crash.

The Police investigation determined that, while the actions of the officer could be considered careless, his behaviour amounted to an error of judgment, and was not in breach of either the Police Code of Conduct or Police policies. Further, as the actions of the other driver contributed to the crash, no offence was applicable.

The Authority is satisfied with how the Police conducted their investigation and the outcomes reached.

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