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O11 Journey data recorders

1. Security protective marking

1.1 Not protectively marked.

2. Summary of changes

2.1 The following changes have been made to this policy on 24 September 2013:

    • This policy has undergone a full review and remains fit for purpose.

      2.2 This policy is next scheduled for full review in September 2015.

3. Purpose 

3.1.  Journey Data Recorders, (JDRs) will be fitted to Kent Police Vehicles for the following purposes:

    • To reduce accident rates in Kent Police vehicles
    • To improve the quality and timeliness of investigation into accidents involving Kent Police vehicles
    • To provide information on driver behaviour for training needs
    • To improve fleet utilisation
    • To reduce fleet operating costs

3.2.  The use of such equipment is considered necessary, reasonable and proportionate, in order to:

    • Enhance public reassurance.
    • Make a positive contribution towards reducing collisions on the road.
    • Reduce the number of incidents involving personal injury to officers as well as other members of the public.
    • Make the best use of finite resources.

3.3.  In promoting this policy it will also allow officers to continue their role:

    • To ensure public safety is maintained.
    • To prevent crime and disorder.
    • To ensure the rights and freedoms of others.

3.4.  These aims are in accordance with the Common Law duties of the Police to prevent and detect crime and maintain the Queen’s Peace and their powers in respect of domestic U.K. Law, together with equipping of officers correctly in accordance with Health and Safety legislation.


4. Scope 

4.1.  All Kent Police vehicles will be fitted with JDRs with the following exception:

    • Those that are part of a car scheme for employees, e.g. lease car, Superintendents' scheme and covert vehicles. 

4.2.  These are permanently fitted devices that will collect data from the following inputs:

    • Driver identification
    • Headlights
    • Reversing lights
    • Left hand indicator
    • Right hand indicator
    • Rear Reds (lights)
    • 360s (lights)
    • Siren
    • Horn
    • Brakes
    • Handbrake
    • Revs
    • Speedometer
    • Transversal and longitudinal accelerometers
    • Directional compass
    • Date
    • Time

4.3.  Thus these inputs enable the data recorder to record passing manoeuvres, swerving, cornering, speed, vehicle direction and impacts. The data stored by JDRs can then be downloaded and subsequently analysed to a number of levels.

4.4.  Data is not collected on location of vehicles or voices of occupants.

4.5.  Data from the JDR on all of these inputs will be downloaded remotely via GPRS.  Data from a previous journey will be downloaded when the vehicles engine is next switched on and the vehicle is in a suitable location to transmit the information.


5. Process 

5.1.  JDRs will be fitted to vehicles either by the Kent Police Workshop, or vehicle converters when specialist vehicles are being adapted. Prior to release each JDR will be calibrated to ensure accuracy. All vehicles fitted with a JDR will have a windscreen and dashboard sticker to identify that the vehicle is fitted with this equipment.

5.2.  Staff driving Kent Police vehicles must have a permit to drive issued by the Driving School. Drivers must ensure that they have the correct authorisation to drive a vehicle. The Driving School will activate identification cards on the JDR software following a successful test.

5.3.  The JDR is not a Type Approved Device, as authorised by the Secretary of State, for corroborating excess speed offences.

5.4.  The Transport services Department will be responsible for the installation, calibration and maintenance of JDRs. All Journey Data Recorders will be installed and calibrated to Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Calibration of JDRs will take place on an annual basis during a service or safety check.


6. Engine start-up 

6.1.  When starting a vehicle it will be a requirement of the driver to identify themselves by presenting an activated identification card (SMART card) to a mounted card recognition system. The engine of the vehicle will not start until this action is completed. The JDR will not prevent a driver from using a vehicle for which they do not have a permit. It is the responsibility of each driver to ensure that they are permitted to drive a category of vehicle. The use of another drivers' identification card will not only result in that drivers behaviour being incorrectly attributed, but also will be the subject of investigation that could lead to disciplinary procedures.


7. Lost and faulty cards 

7.1.  Cards that are lost or faulty should be reported as soon as possible to ISD who will arrange for a replacement card to be issued.


8. Runlock 

8.1.  When Runlock is operating, data is being recorded against the driver who last identified him or herself when starting the vehicle. When such a vehicle is being moved at or from a scene, and this driver is different from the originating driver, the ignition and Runlock must be turned off and the driver must go through the engine start-up process to identify him or herself to the JDR.


9. Installation programme for JDRs 

9.1.  A programme to fit vehicles will take place during 2007. Initially these will be fitted to Traffic vehicles, Emergency Response Vehicles, (ERVs), and new vehicles as they come onto the fleet that year. General Purpose Vehicles, (other than those newly delivered), will be fitted later in the year.

9.2.  Training will be undertaken for the Driving School, Serious Crash Investigation Unit and Transport Services on the download and interpretation of data.

9.3.  An awareness campaign will be undertaken with ‘road shows’ visiting all areas and departments. This will explain the operation of the equipment, purpose, storage and use of data. Staff will be informed that stored data will, where necessary, be disclosed for legal and disciplinary proceedings.


10. Accident investigation – unreported accidents 

10.1.  Role of the Transport Services

10.1.1.  When a vehicle is presented to the Transport Workshop with unreported damage the Assistant Workshop Manager should then be contacted, at the earliest opportunity in order that the information from the JDR may be downloaded.

10.1.2.  Information downloaded by Transport Services will be sent to the Area Commander/Department Head for further investigation.


11. Accident investigation – reported accidents 

11.1.  Role of the Line Supervisor

11.1.1.  Policy I04: Police Vehicle Accident Policy sets out the responsibility of supervisors for the investigation of police collisions and damage found during investigations. Nothing within this policy alters the responsibility for the investigation of such incidents.

11.1.2.  Where any driver of any police vehicle, which is fitted with this equipment, reports an accident to a line supervisor they must also contact the clerk in Transport Services who has access to download this data. Contact by line supervisors with the clerk trained in the extraction of this data will also be made, and where necessary advice sought, where damage is found to a vehicle.

11.2.  Role of Serious Collision Investigation Unit

11.2.1.  Policy P02, Road Traffic Collisions, sets out the responsibility for the investigation of serious police collisions. Nothing within this policy alters current investigation procedures of such incidents.

11.2.2.  Where a serious incident occurs involving any vehicle fitted with a JDR and where a trained Accident Investigation Officer from the Serious Collision Investigation Unit attends the scene, a ‘download’ of information from the data recorders will be made for further investigation.

11.2.3.  Serious Collision Investigation Unit officers will have access to laptop computers and the necessary software to download and analyse the data from a JDR.

11.2.4.  Where the Serious Collision Investigation Unit is called to a collision and data has been stored by the JDR they will be responsible for downloading the data irrespective of the seriousness of the incident. The downloading will take place at the scene unless there are exceptional circumstances that prevent this from happening for example, defective computer or where the vehicle is so badly damaged that it is not possible to undertake a download at the time. If this situation arises, arrangements will be made to download the data at the earliest opportunity.

11.2.5.  The initial analysis of data may be undertaken at the scene. The data is independent and will be used with all other available evidence to determine the cause of the collision. It is not intended to replace the current investigation procedures.

11.2.6.  It should be noted that the software will automatically generate a file name for the downloaded data and place it into the data folder of the software. Under no circumstance must the file name be changed or the file be placed into a different folder.

11.3.  Requests for data must be for a legitimate purpose and requested on word form 3515 and e-mailed to the ' IDR data request' mailbox.


12. Data Protection – Individual Officers’ Responsibilities 

12.1.  All staff and officers handling/storing data associated with this system must ensure that they are aware of their individual responsibilities with regard to the Data Protection Act 1998. The Force Data Protection Officer will register the database facility and a set of data protection operating rules, which define the procedures to be followed when obtaining, using or disclosing data will be drawn up.

12.2.  These operating rules will be made available to those officers who, during the course of their investigations, have access to this data.

12.3.  All officers should be reminded that failure to comply with the Data Protection Act 1998 or the operating rules, may lead to criminal prosecution and/or disciplinary proceedings.


13. Storage of data 

13.1.  Data from the JDR is evidence that may be used in court proceedings and for disciplinary purposes. It is therefore necessary to ensure that storage and accounting procedures are in place.

13.2.  There are a number of safeguards within the system to ensure that when data is downloaded from the JDR it is not corrupt. Data is downloaded remotely to a server and this will always be the master copy. This should be used for analysis purposes and to make additional copies if required. When the Serious Crash Investigation Unit download data on to a laptop for the investigation this will create an additional copy.

13.3.  The officer conducting the download of the data will ensure that the data is suitably referenced and stored in line with current procedures for storage of such material.

13.4.  The data will be retained for 7 years in line with current policy on the storage of such similar data.


14. Tactical pursuit and containment (T-Pac) 

14.1.  Occasions may occur where, due to the nature of the incident and in line with policy M40: Vehicles Which Fail to Stop for Police, ‘tactical contact’ between vehicles takes place. Under these exceptional circumstances, where ‘tactical contact’ has occurred the driver must conduct a dynamic risk assessment.

14.2.  In carrying out the risk assessment, the driver should consider the potential danger to the vehicle occupants, and other road users, of continuing to use a collision damaged vehicle. Occasions may occur where a greater risk is present from not continuing to use a collision-damaged vehicle to achieve a lawful aim.

14.3.  The dynamic risk assessment is a continuous process and the balance of risk may change during the course of the incident.

14.4.  If, having conducted the risk assessment, a decision is reached that the greater risk is present from stopping the driver may continue to use the vehicle whilst involved in this incident.

14.5.  If the Force Control Room is monitoring the incident, Storm should be updated to reflect that ‘tactical contact’ has taken place.

14.6.  For operational reasons an incident may not, at the time, be monitored by the FCR. Under these exceptional circumstances the driver must notify a supervisor as soon as practicable.

14.7.  Where ‘tactical contact’ has taken place the vehicle should be presented to the Transport Services Workshop at the earliest opportunity to allow an inspection to take place. This inspection may include data from the JDR to establish the G-forces and thus any damage that may have occurred.


15. Driver behaviour 

15.1.  Although the fitting of JDRs is a technological response to police vehicle collision/damage reduction and investigation, its effectiveness is partly due to the psychological acceptance of the system and realisation that the officers driving is being recorded.

15.2.  The system has been accepted by the Police Federation as they do recognise that the units are likely, more often than not, to support the post collision explanations that police drivers provide.

15.3.  The manufacturers promote the device claiming a reduction in collisions/damage of between 20% and 30%, which is supported by documentary evidence.

15.4.  There are clear guidelines for all police drivers written in the ‘Codes of Practice and Guidance Manual for All Police Drivers – Police Pursuits and Response Driving’. Data collected from JDRs will be available for the Driving School to analyse and thus enable them to target driver training towards those drivers who do not demonstrate behaviour that meets that required by the Kent Police Standard.


16. Professional Standards 

16.1.  The Professional Standards Department will be provided with data when investigating complaints about driver behaviour. The data will also be used to investigate instances where Speeding Enforcement Notices have been issued.

16.2.  The Force will not actively search the data for offences committed by officers and staff, but where data is analysed for other purposes, and any offences become evident, the data will be passed to the appropriate Department/Area for investigation.

16.3.  Any resultant disciplinary action will follow current policy and guidelines following an investigation of which the data from JDRs may form a part.


17. Human Rights Act 1998 Compliance 

17.1.  Consideration has been given to the compatibility of this policy and related procedures with the Human Rights Act 1998. Particular attention has been given to the legal basis of its precepts, the legitimacy of its aims and the justifications and proportionality of the actions intended by it.

17.2.  Care has been exercised, when writing this policy, to ensure that whenever there is the potential to infringe a person’s human rights the action taken is the least intrusive option with the lowest impact necessary to achieve the aims.

17.3.  On the application of this policy Kent Police will not discriminate against any persons regardless of age, sex, race, colour, language, religion, political, or other opinion, national or social origin, association with national minority, property, birth, or other status as defined under Article 14, European Convention Human Rights (ECHR).


18. Statement of Rights 

18.1.  In respect of internal grievance, the existing management structure of the Force and the formal grievance procedures together with an appeals facility/right to make representation will cater for any such issues. As regards external complaints civil remedies are available with appellate facilities in addition to an individual’s rights under the Police Complaints Procedures.


19. Disclosure 

19.1.  The disclosure principles, as contained within Force Policy, which deal with the Attorney General’s guidelines on disclosure, need to be applied to the data stored in the JDR. Officers investigating police-owned vehicle collisions will ensure the completed file forwarded for a decision to be made, contains the appropriate information regarding the incident data and any statement interpreting such data, thus allowing decision makers to be in possession of all information on which to base their decision.


20. Monitoring/Review 

20.1.  The Head of Transport Services will be responsible for the review of the success of the installation of JDR on a yearly basis. This review will be reported to Chief Officers.

21. Equality impact assessment

21.1. This policy has been assessed with regards to its relevance to race and diversity equality. As a result this policy has been graded as having a low potential impact.

Policy reference: O11 Journey data recorders
Policy owner: Head of Human Resources
Contact point: Policy Unit
Date last reviewed: 24 September 2013
Document last saved: 25 September 2013