Statement – 08.08.17

After the considerable interest shown on my tweet of driving at 140mph at night on a predominantly empty motorway to a break in progress, I would like to add that we as Advanced Drivers in the Traffic and the Armed Response units will always ensure that if we drive at speed, we do not take unnecessary risks.  This may seem like an unnecessary speed to many, however officers undertake numerous extensive driving courses which are refreshed regularly in order to keep them to the highly trained standards required for the role they do.

I myself am a Advanced Police driver, a VIP driver and a Pursuit Tactics advisor.  I was a Senior Investigating Officer for serious and fatal road traffic collisions for 15 years. I am a Tactical Pursuit and Containment qualified officer and have over 20 years’ experience of driving on full front line shifts.  The geography of our Force area means we have to cover vast distances and this is always judged against the potential risk to the persons calling for police assistance, and the other motorists we pass along with ourselves.

We can make up considerable time on empty motorways between locations.  General guidance by our driver training department is to keep top speeds to no more than double the speed limit.  I would say however, I do regret the tweet, as it does tend to glamorise speed which is inappropriate and unintentional.  I try to mix my tweet content to be fun, humorous, create debate, and to show the public what our every day work is.   This means I hopefully have the public with me when I want to discuss the more educational and advisory aspects of policing.  I thank those who have supported me on this issue.

PS Harry Tangye


21 thoughts on “Statement – 08.08.17

  1. We are all pleas d to see a police officer arrive on scene when they have been called . The video clearly shows driving at speed safely , with due consideration to conditions and other road users . The driving was to a very high standard with no distractions . What was the problem ??

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What is this world or country coming to,when you have to explain that you have to drive fast to prevent criminals doing bad things or at least catch them and lock them up! Some people need to go back to school and learn things that they didn’t in their past because they were staring out of the window or something worse. Keep doing what you’re doing and keeping everyone safe.


  3. I too would like the police to turn up promptly. No issues as this officer has obviously followed procedure to minimize the necessary and acceptable risks.
    I see no difference in Twitter posts to films made for TV.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I have nothing but support, pride & admiration for our trained, professional & experienced Police Officers. They have the quality to judge a situation and act accordingly. Their knowledge permits them to respond within their own capabilities to carry out their duties as the situation demands. No one size fits all and no situation merits identical handling. Why others have the termerity to question something outside their limitations is a mystery but we seem to have a plethora of armchair experts. Carry on regardless of irrational comments, you are the one making rapid decisions and you are the one we trust.


    1. The people asking the question are the public, who Harry is sworn to serve.

      A police officer who is far too important to respond to legitimate public concerns has no value in their role.

      “Temerity?” how insufferably pompous are you?

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Its a sad day when one of the somewhat depleted blue line has to justify doing the job that they’re trained for. If he’d driven to the scene following all the speed limits no doubt the bad guys would have made off unchallenged and he’d be having to justify why he took so long to get there.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Police officers are trained to an exceptionally high standard of driving and are far more capable of handling a vehicle travelling at high speeds than other drivers. I, for one, will never criticise my colleagues in the police service (I am a response driver in a different service) for doing what they are trained and equipped to do. They wouldn’t be allowed to do what they do if they weren’t as good & well trained as they are.
    Responding to an emergency call requires using your judgement & training as well as considering a number of factors, constantly re-evaluating to ensure that you make safe, effective & timely progress. You have to balance risk.
    Fully support Sgt Tangye and all other officers for what they do.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. My first thought was, do you really have to justify this? Then I read all the other supportive comments. I have no connection at all the the police except occasionally our local PCSOs who cover an area far too large. You are preaching to the choir but keep on doing so, word might just get out!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m okay with you making the judgement as to what speed was necessary and appropriate (you being a professional driver). But your judgement to post that video was seriously flawed – that said it’s clear you now recognise that.


  9. Carry on with your tweets please.I am retired after 28 years and enjoy a small look into your daily routine.I didn’t see anything outrageous in the video,Good safe driving by a well trained officer.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I envy the people who are complaining about this video because, clearly they have a charmed life, the world is a beautiful place and they have nothing else in their lives to winge about. I can say that I have had the privilege to work with Sgt Harry Tangye and the rest of his team. To a person, they are absolute professionals in every aspect of the tasks they required to undertake in persuit of their goal which is, preserve life, prevent further injury and protect. Total respect Sarge, continue doing what you do best.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Before giving an opinion, I would like to know the range of the cars headlights and its stopping distance at 140 mph with the weight it was carrying. The highest speed I can find online is 70 MPH for a stopping distance of 96 meters.

    The headlights and brakes may not be factory specification.

    Also, on the UK Column Live show today, the road in question was identified as the A38 not a motorway.

    I presume that you are aware of the advice the Federation has circulated about “dangerous driving”. You are entitled to the privelidge against self incrimination, but is the video not evidence of an offence?

    I await your comments with interest.


    1. As my brother is also in the same driving spec as yourself i can only advise of the reality , opinions are just that until it is fact, most with negative or diff of opinion will remain as is until factual diff of opinion occurs. the police advanced driver also transports his precious cargo of his children or family. on that note, sgt, may i request that should i be unfortunate enough to be involved in a traffic related collision or such like you utilise your skills, training and repetitive diversity tactical safety at high speed in order to assist me when i need your assistance, you have my blessing to head to me as quickly as you can within your safety stringent capabilities, and my childrens , family, so on so forth after all the vital minutes relating to opinion could be the difference to life or death, my life, i chose life, i care not of opinion as i simply am aware of facts, i opt for you to please go with strive to save my life if not just for me but my family who will mourn me and blame the delay in getting to my aid, you will never please everyone rarely you will please anyone entirely, your job is not to please people it is to assist in emergency your job is to do what you can the best you can to protect and serve your country, whether thats at 140 mph or 10mph you do what your job requires you to do to preserve, protect and prolong life. After all the fact and reality of the situation is that we the public that you serve and protect at the cost of your own safety is what we would expect you to do, or we would have a very different opinion. and round and round and round we go. respect to you and all you do from i , the public who support and the ones who like to share opinion without facts as you will never know the facts until it happens. safe passage to you all sparing every second to assist us.


  12. Three days and no response to the questions about the stopping distance v. headlight range issue or the Federation legal advice about dangerous driving.

    This is beginning to look like a lack of training about the vehicle or the law including Health and Satety.

    And no, the D& C mangement have not backed him, they are trying to avoid their vicarious liability for allowing a system of work where this sort of thing is considered acceptable. Situation normal there, and the Sgt. should know it.


    1. I think part of the problem is the, “Speed kills,” message that everyone is fed nowadays and the lack of more in depth teaching about road safety. The government has cut down on traffic policing and the majority of policing on roads is speed cameras, so people can do whatever they want so long as it’s within the speed limit. Local authorities have the power to set speed limits and deal with every collision and complaint by reducing them.

      We now try to keep our roads safe purely by setting limits at a level which minimises the damage the worst driver can do while driving badly, we don’t really seek to educate people well enough to make them better drivers.

      The result is people’s assumption that even a trained police officer driving at speed must be dangerous. They have no concept of the training the officer has been through and the processes going on in his mind to ensure minimal risk driving at that speed. They probably can’t even comprehend the difference in scenario between a motorway in the middle of the night and outside a school at 8.30am.

      Try to explain observation and forward planning to them and they see it as arrogance and thinking you’re better than you are rather than something real and important. Hence why the government sees it as easier just to tell them to slow down with a two word soundbite than try to teach them the correct mindset to drive safely.

      I feel that to make a difference we need tougher driving tests so everyone is taught to drive more at the level required to pass a police or IAM driving test rather than just proving they’re not too dangerous pootling around town. Introducing teenagers to off road driving courses could even be done through schools when they’re 15 or 16. Society is trying to make cars seem uncool because of the perceived antisocial effects of them but people still want to use them. They just see taking an interest in maintaining them and driving them well as uncool, so we still have the traffic but the cars are badly maintained and badly driven.

      Additionally, whatever your personal views on speed, your training and your justification for using it, people will see it as hypocritical when the frequent message from the police force across the country is that speed is always dangerous. The Assistant Chief Constable of my local police force in Lancashire is also head of the local speed camera partnership and has had average speed cameras set up along miles of local roads. We also have cameras festooned along motorways now as more lengths of it become smart motorway. The result of lower speed limits and more cameras means more and more people are being prosecuted for speeding without actually driving like maniacs, and the government’s response is to increase the penalties for speeding as if a huge proportion of drivers are dangerous lunatics. Therefore, seeing a video like this is going to get the backs up of people who have been prosecuted for such heinous crimes as 79mph on a quiet motorway or 56mph on a free flowing smart motorway or 45mph on a country road that’s good for NSL but has had its limit recently cut by the local authority.

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I think people have been unduly harsh here. Harry is a junior ranking officer, in policing terms, he is only one level about the shop floor worker, he doesn’t have management experience and he made a mistake. Very few officers being driven at speed to a job would think “Ah, these needs to be posted on Twitter.” Harry did.

    He’s expressed regret and won’t do it again.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Errr…. sorry for asking but:
    And what exactly is so special about going at 140mph?
    Just to put things into (an international) perspective:
    In Germany, there is NO general speed limit on motorways, meaning every Joe and Jenny can drive at those speeds – and frequently do, more or less successfully.
    A trained driver with the Force or other Responders will rather regularly arrive at that speed, if responding via a motorway, and not on exactly empty roads either.
    Nobody would think about censoring a driver and accidents with emergency vehicles on motorways are REALLY rare – motorways are safer by a really wide margin than, say, city centres or major intersections, which pose the highest risk by far.
    Cheers from the continent& keep up the good work!;-)

    Liked by 1 person

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