POLICE chiefs have insisted that officers are right to use sirens and blue lights to react to night-time emergencies in South Derbyshire – after complaints were received of incidents as early as 2am.
Derbyshire Police were quick to quash complaints from residents in Repton, Willington and Melbourne following reports of police cars travelling through the villages early in the morning ‘causing a disturbance’.
Although police chiefs were quick to apologise for any inconvenience the situation may have caused, they revealed that if they were responding to an ‘immediate’ emergency then they would respond in this manner every time in line with their training..
Nigel Lidsey, South Derbyshire section inspector for the force, told the Mail: “If officers are responding to an immediate emergency call then it is standard procedure to respond in this way with the use of sirens and lights.
“The very nature of the emergency call is that officers are needed somewhere urgently and will, as a result, use every tool available to them to attend the incident as soon as they can.
“Officers are trained to have ‘blues and twos’ on even if it is a call in a built-up area.
“This is not something that is ever misused.
“The incident severity is set by force control, so once officers receive news of a call they respond accordingly.
“It is never anyone’s intention to annoy anyone or disrupt their evening or morning with this method of policing but it is being done for a very important reason and we hope that anyone impacted understands that.
“It should also be pointed out that officers are not allowed to have just lights on, they have to have both lights and sirens on if the level of incident requires ‘blues and twos’.
“I am confident in the driving ability of my officers but if members of the public are concerned about driving standards, I want to know about it.
“Police drivers are specially trained before they can respond to such incidents.
“We just hope the public realise we are doing this to keep people safe and not for any other reason.”