And there’s reality.

In 1989, Hollywood released the film gem that is “Lethal Weapon 2.” The opening scene featured heroes, Riggs and Murtaugh, in a vehicle pursuit. The scene lasts less than five minutes, but gives a veritable treasure trove of huge pursuit mistakes. Busy intersections? Check. Excessive speed? Yup. No seatbelt? Indeed.

I’m not saying an opening sequence with Mel Gibson yelling “God, I love this job!” and “Can’t you go any faster? Floor this thing!” isn’t cinematically awesome. On the contrary, I’d say watching ol’ Mel bang on the roof and screaming in ecstasy practically bleeds cool, and taps into the very overly developed adrenal glands we cops tend to have.

However that being said, it certainly isn’t the way we do business day-to-day. The bill for the wanton destruction in most action movies would be epic and would certainly result in civil litigation at the least and losing one’s job at worst … not to mention the injuries and likely deaths.

Let’s take a look at basic pursuit tactics. These are common-sense approaches to pursuits and I strongly urge you to review your department policies regarding vehicle pursuits. You’d think most of the following suggestions go without saying. Sadly though, as professional bad guy chasers, we have a tendency to lose focus when the aforementioned adrenal glands start pumping the glorious adrenaline we all dig so much.

 

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