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  • A Bit of a moral dilemma?

    Quick BG on me: I am one test away (polygraph) from becoming a cadet for the Nevada Highway Patrol with the academy starting in January.

    Yesterday, I was involved in a VERY minor auto accident (not my fault) when the driver of the vehicle on my right moved into my lane striking the side of my front bumper with the right rear door of her Ford Taurus. I was a little shocked it happened, but since my car is a full size Chevy Silverado, I really didn't feel it much, although it did tweak my front bumper (her car sustained much more damage than mine). We both pulled over when it was safe to do so to exchange information. She admitted it was her fault, and asked if I could just get some estimates and she would pay me for the damage. And since I've delt with a couple small fender benders before in this fashion, I had no problem with it, in general.

    But here's what I consider to be the real problem. The lady who hit me was 90 years old, and the reason she didn't want it through her insurance (and yes, it did get ALL of her personal and insurance info) was because she felt they would cancel the policy. She even semi-joked that she was amazed she was even still driving.

    Is this a person who should really even still be on the road, or is it even my place to judge that, and it should be left to the DMV? As an LEO, does this become a concern that you have a person behind the wheel, when they really shouldn't be anymore?

    In a normal situation, I'd just go get a few quotes, call the person to see if the figure was doable, and if not, then go through insurance. But in this case, I almost feel obligated to getting someone who I feel is an unsafe driver off the road. Am I thinking this through too much? Or would you guys (and gals) just take it through the insurance, and hope it takes her out from behind the wheel?
    Nevada DPS:
    PT/Written: 4/24/09 (Passed)
    Oral Interview: 5/13/09 (Passed)
    Background Began: 6/8/09
    Capital Police Oral Interview: 6/16/09
    Hiring Board: late 8/09 (passed)
    Conditional Offer NHP: 9/12/09 (accepted)
    Psych Test: 9/30/09 (Passed)
    Medical Test: 10/7/09
    Polygraph: 11/17/09
    Begin LEO Career: TBD
    DPS Academy: Jan 2010

  • #2
    Take it through the insurance company and be done with it. It's not your place, or even mine as a law enforcement officer, to judge whether or not somebody has the fitness to hold a drivers license. If their driving is impaired, then I can certainly keep them from driving, but it's a wholly separate state agency that is actually responsible for giving people the license to drive.

    It sounds to me like you should have made a police report at the scene anyway. Perhaps even passed those statements along to the officer to be included in the report. It's possible your insurance company might push the issue with the Department of Motor Vehicles, but not likely. Eventually this lady will fail to obtain a license (either by failing a vision test, written test, practical test, etc).

    As a LEO does it concern me that somebody without the proper fitness to drive might have a license? Of course it does. It also concerns me that my state issues people gun permits without the fitness to carry a gun. It concerns me that my state doesn't issue a "Breeding License" to allow only people who are able to be good parents the right to have kids. Unfortunately, I don't get to decide these things, just deal with them when they arise during my shift.
    Originally posted by K40
    To me, open carry is the equivalent of the couple making out and groping each other at the food court in the mall. Yeah, they are probably legal, as long as they don't start getting undressed. But they are still social retards.
    ‎"You go for a man hard enough and fast enough, he don't have time to think about how many's with him; he thinks about himself, and how he might get clear of that wrath that's about to set down on him." - Rooster Cogburn

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    • #3
      You're situation is a tough one, because I've been in similar situations. But if you think she is a big danger to herself or other drivers, I'd go through the insurance company, and that may take care of it, and if that doesnt do it, its probably too late to get anything done.
      Otherwise, I'm sure it varies from state to state, but in NE, we can write a letter requesting the DMV to revoke the license of a driver and have them retest for one if we feel they are unfit to drive (It has to be approved by the Chief, and signed by him). I've filled one out so far, for an older fella with lots of health issues, and loses feeling in his legs.
      You're state may do something similar, if you come across another similar situation.
      I have neither the time, nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under the blanket of the very freedom I provide, and then questions the manner by which I provide it. I'd rather you just said thank you, and went on your way!


      They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. But I find it somewhat... distasteful. To be given credit for work that's not mine. Especially inferior work.

      sigpic

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      • #4
        I leave it up to the DMV.

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        • #5
          In RI, if an officer feels there is an issue with someone's ability to drive, we send a request for a medical review to the DMV. When you become a LEO, I strongly urge you to use this tool if your state has it. This is something you should definitely get involved in. There comes a time when older people should no longer drive and they are a danger to the rest of us.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by PtlCop View Post
            Take it through the insurance company and be done with it. It's not your place, or even mine as a law enforcement officer, to judge whether or not somebody has the fitness to hold a drivers license. If their driving is impaired, then I can certainly keep them from driving, but it's a wholly separate state agency that is actually responsible for giving people the license to drive.

            It sounds to me like you should have made a police report at the scene anyway. Perhaps even passed those statements along to the officer to be included in the report. It's possible your insurance company might push the issue with the Department of Motor Vehicles, but not likely. Eventually this lady will fail to obtain a license (either by failing a vision test, written test, practical test, etc).

            As a LEO does it concern me that somebody without the proper fitness to drive might have a license? Of course it does. It also concerns me that my state issues people gun permits without the fitness to carry a gun. It concerns me that my state doesn't issue a "Breeding License" to allow only people who are able to be good parents the right to have kids. Unfortunately, I don't get to decide these things, just deal with them when they arise during my shift.
            Things must be different here - for circumstances such as this, we can send a letter to the DMV and request that they have an administrative review.
            summer - winter - work

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            • #7
              Just because she came into your lane doesnt mean she is unfit for driving. Ive done that before.
              We have a form that we can send in to the state that will request a re-test for the driver. Ive only done that once.
              I would ask the Nevada State Patrol what you should do, they would know best what can occur in your state
              "I don't go on "I'maworthlesscumdumpster.com" and post negative **** about cum dumpsters."
              The Tick

              "Are you referring to the secret headquarters of a fictional crime fighter or penal complex slang for a-$$hole, anus or rectum?"
              sanitizer

              "and we all know you are a poser and a p*ssy.... "
              Bearcat357 to Dinner Portion/buck8/long relief

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              • #8
                Originally posted by mda View Post
                In RI, if an officer feels there is an issue with someone's ability to drive, we send a request for a medical review to the DMV. When you become a LEO, I strongly urge you to use this tool if your state has it. This is something you should definitely get involved in. There comes a time when older people should no longer drive and they are a danger to the rest of us.

                This is exactly how we do it in NC. I know loss of mobility can be devastating to the elderly, but they can't put others at risk.
                sigpic

                I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Code Seven
                  I want to believe that you're completely "not at fault," and I don't know what "a couple" means, but I have to wonder why you keep getting into "fender benders." Defensive driving is a good practice.
                  Well, by a 'couple' I mean where my car had been hit twice while parked, both times by someone backing into it, and causing such little damage, that the person who hit my car felt it cheaper just to pay for the damage out of pocket. So it wasn't a situation where 'defensive driving' (and I've taken the Smith Defensive Driving Course multiple times) would have done any good. Given the fact, that in my previous employment, I drove, on average, over 40,000 miles a year, my driving record is very good, but unfortunately, we can't always control other peoples actions.
                  Nevada DPS:
                  PT/Written: 4/24/09 (Passed)
                  Oral Interview: 5/13/09 (Passed)
                  Background Began: 6/8/09
                  Capital Police Oral Interview: 6/16/09
                  Hiring Board: late 8/09 (passed)
                  Conditional Offer NHP: 9/12/09 (accepted)
                  Psych Test: 9/30/09 (Passed)
                  Medical Test: 10/7/09
                  Polygraph: 11/17/09
                  Begin LEO Career: TBD
                  DPS Academy: Jan 2010

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    In TX anyone can recommend and fill out a form that will have a person go before a Medical Advisory Board to see if they are fit to operate a motor vehicle.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by JLee View Post
                      Things must be different here - for circumstances such as this, we can send a letter to the DMV and request that they have an administrative review.
                      I wish we could do something like that...
                      Originally posted by K40
                      To me, open carry is the equivalent of the couple making out and groping each other at the food court in the mall. Yeah, they are probably legal, as long as they don't start getting undressed. But they are still social retards.
                      ‎"You go for a man hard enough and fast enough, he don't have time to think about how many's with him; he thinks about himself, and how he might get clear of that wrath that's about to set down on him." - Rooster Cogburn

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Your incident was relatively minor in it entirety. At the time you had the option to call law enforcement or to exchange information with the other driver. You opted for the later and, in so doing, you agreed with the other party not to go through your insurance company. If she fails to carry through with her end of the bargain, then the entire scenario has changed and you may certainly re-evaluate your options.

                        However, since she is still willing to attend to your damages, just get the estimates, call her and give her a chance. That is the morality of the situation.

                        You are not a peace officer as of this date and therefore have no obligation to address her driving competency.
                        Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence!

                        [George Washington (1732 - 1799)]

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by SgtCHP View Post
                          Your incident was relatively minor in it entirety. At the time you had the option to call law enforcement or to exchange information with the other driver. You opted for the later and, in so doing, you agreed with the other party not to go through your insurance company. If she fails to carry through with her end of the bargain, then the entire scenario has changed and you may certainly re-evaluate your options.

                          However, since she is still willing to attend to your damages, just get the estimates, call her and give her a chance. That is the morality of the situation.

                          You are not a peace officer as of this date and therefore have no obligation to address her driving competency.
                          Our local traffic God has spoken and I agree 100%
                          Today's Quote:

                          "The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits."
                          Albert Einstein

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by mdrdep View Post
                            Our local traffic God has spoken and I agree 100%
                            +1

                            This does bring up a question though.....

                            What IS the proper sacrifice to a traffic God?.....Road flares?.....
                            The posts on this forum by this poster are of his personal opinion, and his personal opinion alone

                            "Politicians are like diapers. They need to be changed often and for the same reason"

                            "We fight not for glory; nor for wealth; nor honor, but only and alone we fight for freedom, which no good man surrenders but with his life"

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by LA DEP View Post
                              +1

                              This does bring up a question though.....

                              What IS the proper sacrifice to a traffic God?.....Road flares?.....
                              Negative.... We must slaughter Ninja Cows....

                              The last time I tried, four officers got sent to the emergency room.
                              Education ... has produced a vast population able to read but unable to distinguish what is worth reading.
                              - G. M. Trevelyan

                              B.S. Business Administration - Texas A&M 1990
                              MPA - University of Texas Dallas 2004
                              Graduate Certificate in Criminal Justice - American Military University 2006
                              Graduate Certificate in Accounting - University of Dallas 2008
                              Various Graduate Credits - UoP
                              MA Christian Ministry Chaplaincy Dallas Baptist University 20%
                              DPA Valdosta State 30%

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