Failure to pull over

joe comp
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Failure to pull over

by: joe comp on
Wed Feb 23, 2011 11:28 am

Hi. I would appreciate some feedback on this ticket. I recieved a ticket for failure to pull over for an emergency vehicle. During an icy, winter storm, I saw that I was approaching an accident up ahead on the shoulder. As I was already doing 70 in a 100km one, I still knew that I had to get into the left lane. As I was approaching the point I felt that I had to change lanes I saw in my rear view mirror an ambulance coming up behind me in the left lane. This basically had me boxed in. Accident on shoulder, ambulance in the left lane, me in the middle. So my approacrh was to slow down to 40, pass the accident and when the amulance was near take my foot of of the gas pedal and pulling over about 2 feet not much but there were no visible lines. I felt stopping with the icy road conditions was too dangerous. I could have either skidded into the accident, wiped out in the middle of the highway with the ambulace hitting me, or myself going off the shoulder into the ditch. The officers notes state that the ambulance had to go left of me almost going into the ditch to do so. This was not true. He was always in the left lane. The notes also state he was assisitng a car out of the ditch. Also not true. The car was already out of the ditch and on the shoulder.


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by: Radar Identified on
Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:14 pm

What section did he charge you under?
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by: hwybear on
Wed Feb 23, 2011 11:18 pm

joe comp wrote:. The notes also state he was assisitng a car out of the ditch. Also not true. The car was already out of the ditch and on the shoulder.
That is true...the vehicle went into ditch, police arrived, assisted by providing traffic control....and until the tow/car are gone down the road...its one and the same reason for being there.
Above is merely a suggestion/thought and in no way constitutes legal advice or views of my employer. www.OHTA.ca




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by: Stanton on
Thu Feb 24, 2011 12:49 am

Well, you did commit the offence, but I don't believe it's an absolute liability offence. That means if you can honestly show you failed to act because you felt pulling over would cause an accident, you have a possible defence.

Can't really give you odds of success, because that depends on the Crown's evidence and how well everyone presents their case.


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by: joe comp on
Thu Feb 24, 2011 1:02 am

I guess what it is is that I'm really worried and just trying to get some idea of the outcome. I did technically commit the offence, but I thought that what I did was honestly the safest route. All of this happened within a 30 second time frame which I felt was not enough time to try and stop under the prevailing severe weather conditions.


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by: Radar Identified on
Thu Feb 24, 2011 11:57 pm

Three demerit points, fine, no possibility of jail or licence suspension (that is assuming that you do not have a whole pile of convictions) would be the outcome. Probable insurance hike as well.

So the officer was charging you for failing to pull over and stop for the ambulance. I guess if you can articulate that you were UNABLE to stop but cleared the way as best you could, you may have a chance. Don't know if that will be accepted as a reasonable explanation, though.
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by: joe comp on
Fri Feb 25, 2011 12:51 am

Ok I see. Im very confused then as to what was expected in that situation. I honestly felt that with everything happening so fast that to try and stop was impossible. I didn't want to risk spinning out into the accident on the shoulder, or the ambulance or myself into the ditch. What should I have done better? (not a rhetorical question)


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by: Radar Identified on
Fri Feb 25, 2011 3:21 pm

Depends on the rearward visibility and the speed of the ambulance. If you can present a reasonable argument that you saw the ambulance approaching very quickly, the visibility was poor so you only saw it at the last second, then you began slowing down to clear the way and were in the process of attempting to stop, it may work. I can't guarantee that it will work in court, though. By your own admission, you stated that you were not attempting to stop.

You will only skid or spin out if you slam on the brakes or make some other abrupt manoeuvre. Does your car have ABS?
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by: joe comp on
Sun Feb 27, 2011 9:16 am

Yes my car does have ABS. But ABS doesn't work on ice. I went throught 2 stops signs and a red light on the way to the highyway. I don't have distances, only times. By the time I entered the highway, I had approx. 30 seconds until I reached the left shoulder accident. I was intently looking at that accident to see what might happen ie carss pulling out tow truck hooking up car etc. By about 15 seconds is when I wanted to pull over into the left lane, I saw an abulance in my rear view mirror was behind me. Like a line drive baseball coming at ones head, I figured the option that I ultimately chose was the safest one; nudge left to avoid right shoulder accident nudge right to let abmulance pass with foot off of accelarator as to not have any adverse control over vehicle and slow the car down.


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by: hwybear on
Sun Feb 27, 2011 9:43 am

joe comp wrote: But ABS doesn't work on ice. .
Yes ABS does work on ice, snow etc....can hear it activate with a "griding" type noise and feel the brake pedal pulsate also.
An anti-lock braking system (ABS) is a safety system that allows the wheels on a motor vehicle to continue interacting tractively with the road surface as directed by driver steering inputs while braking, preventing the wheels from locking up (that is, ceasing rotation) and therefore avoiding skidding.
An ABS generally offers improved vehicle control and decreases stopping distances on dry and slippery surfaces for many drivers; however, on loose surfaces like gravel or snow-covered pavement, an ABS can slightly increase braking distance, although the increase in distance, it is compensated by the improved control of the vehicle
Above is merely a suggestion/thought and in no way constitutes legal advice or views of my employer. www.OHTA.ca


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by: Radar Identified on
Tue Mar 01, 2011 7:23 pm

joe comp wrote:But ABS doesn't work on ice
Where did you hear that? That is completely incorrect. ABS is designed SPECIFICALLY to help you steer and stop in slippery and icy conditions. Even if you absolutely stood on your brakes, you would have remained in control of your vehicle unless you steered wildly. Ask any advanced driving instructor and they will tell you the same thing.

Based on the information you provided, I'd suggest taking a plea-bargain to a lesser charge, if the Prosecutor offers it.
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by: joe comp on
Wed Mar 02, 2011 5:57 pm

Hi. I'm not trying to be a smart aleck by stating this, but I slid througth two stop signs and and half way through an intersection on a red light during that night. I felt because of that and having slid off of the road 3 times (once spinning around in circles) during snow storms that attempting a stop "might" not be the smartest thing. "My attempt" to stop was to slow down and take my foot off of the accelerator. Since my first attendence, now I'm being being told that the deal I was offered, I should have accepted; 240 and an obstructing traffic charge. I guess I feel that I'm innocent and that Im realizing I have to take something as punishment. Welcome to the game of life!! Ok I made a mistake, must I take 2 days off of work unpaid, then lose and pay 500 dollars and then have a 6x's insurance rate hike?! On a side note In Chatham Kent County I hear no deals what so ever on this so..... I do thank you for your input!!


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by: Stanton on
Wed Mar 02, 2011 6:24 pm

joe comp wrote:I'm not trying to be a smart aleck by stating this, but I slid througth two stop signs and and half way through an intersection on a red light during that night.

That information, if anything, strengthens the Crown's case against you. It demonstrates you were well aware of the poor road conditions, yet were still driving in a manner and speed that would not allow you to safely pull over and/or come to a full stop if required. You're always responsible for driving in a manner that allows you to keep full control of your vehicle, regardless of the road and weather conditions.

By your own admissions, during a winter ice storm, after having been unable to stop for 3 separate traffic controls, you continued driving at 70 km/hr. You also admit that after seeing the ambulance, during a 30 second period of time, you could not stop or pull over, and were only able to slow your car by 30 km/hr. If this is the case, I really don't think you can argue due diligence. Yes, you were driving below the speed limit, but clearly still too fast for the conditions.


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by: joe comp on
Mon Apr 04, 2011 9:01 am

The first stop sign I was doing the speed limit and slid a quarter through it. The second stop sign the street had a 40 km speed limit and I was doing 30km because of first slide, and slid a quarter way through it. The red light scenario had me doing 40 on a 50km street and I still slid. It was icy people (Dec 17th). You have to remember there were people on the highway behind me, couple this with a panic situation, and racing mind to make the right decision in a short period of time I chose what I did.


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