General Non-Fiction posted September 3, 2016

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A true event short police story

The Speeder.

by PhilipCatshill

During my police career, I encountered the mundane, the mysterious and the bizarre. This encounter didn't lead to an arrest, but nevertheless, definitely fell into the bizarre, and also perhaps, into the classification of mundane as it involved a written recommendation that the driving licence authority should review a nonagenarian lady's capability to drive ...

Ironically, the lady's name was Mrs Swift. On a sunny afternoon in the 1970s, I was coasting along in my police "panda" patrol car when she whizzed past in her mint green Morris Minor. I flicked on the blue beacon and set off in pursuit. All I could see of the lady driver through the rear window of her car was her grey hair, on which she wore a green netted hat. My patrol car engine screamed in protest, but she was still drawing away.

A blast from the two tones carved a path through the traffic for me, but still she didn't slow down. At one point, I managed to get alongside and waved her to pull over, but she seemed oblivious to my presence and ploughed on regardless.

A build up of traffic at a red light enabled me to pull across the front, but as I left my car, the lights changed, so she just veered to the left and carried on. At the next set of lights, I managed to block her path, and this time, I left the car with the blue beacon flashing, the two tones blaring and the stop sign illuminated.

As I approached the car, Mrs Swift wound down the car window and said, "Are you trying to advertise something..."

As I say, incredible as it might seem, this is based on a true story. It occurred long before computerised records facilitated an instant response, so the lady carried on driving for a few more weeks while the Driving Licence Authority processed my report and requested a medical opinion from the lady's doctor. Before the Authority could revoke her licence, age and a weakening heart dragged Mrs Swift into death.
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