My online mate TUPC has been writing some powerful stuff recently on the things we deal with in the line of duty, as has Big Fella. They got me thinking way back to my first ever shift as an operational police constable back in 1990.
I’d done 20 weeks training at Hendon followed by 10 weeks street duties in an
My first shift was nights. I turned up early for my 2200hrs start because as I was the new proby I had to make the tea for the relief until someone newer came along. Rightly so in my opinion.
After parading on I was doubled up with an experienced officer who I shall call PC Mick
Off we went into the night in our high powered 1 litre metro. He showed me the real important stuff like tea spots and good kebab shops as nothing much was happening.
Just after we were driving around when I spotted a car coming towards us turn off sharpish without signalling. I told Mick and we went after it. Our car didn’t have a siren and the blue light would only work if the handbrake was on so Mick was sounding the horn and flashing the headlights at the car in front.
It took off like a bat out of hell. I could see 2 girls in the rear that did not look happy that the driver was failing to stop. Mick told me to put the shout on the radio which I did. The bandit car was leaving us behind going over the brow of a hill. We were both cursing our cars lack of power when just before getting to the top of the hill there was an almighty crash.
The sight that met us when we came over the top was awful. The bandit car had gone through a red light and hit a car that was crossing its path. The car struck had been slammed sideways into a lamp post and almost bent around it. The driver was trapped in the mangled wreckage and was screaming for help. The bandit car had spun around and the girl passengers had been flung from the rear door and were laid in the road in a bad way. The driver of the bandit car had gone straight through the windscreen and into some railings. We couldn’t do anything at that point for the trapped driver other than call for help which we’d done. Mick went to check on the girls and I went to the driver of the bandit car. His mouth had pink frothy saliva coming out. He died in front of me. There was nothing I could do for him. He had too many injuries.
The Inspector turned up as I was still kneeling by his body and told me to go and direct traffic. He told me I shouldn’t have to deal with this on my first day. The girls died too. The other driver was cut free. I don’t know what happened to him.
I can’t remember the rest of the shift.
It was one hell of a first day.
I’ve never had nightmares about it thankfully. I have over other stuff. Another time.