One of the regular blogs I check is by a friend Seiche, called simply Seiche. In an item this week he told of how after months of training for a martial arts tournament he got rear ended on the journey to it and ended up having his car written off and not actually making it to his destination. It reminded me of an incident that occurred way back in my previous life as a cop around 1986.
I was stationed at the Protective Security Groups and one of the roles we had was to look after crooks who were in the witness protection program but who wouldn't be actually set free with new identities because they were either doing time, or because they were required to appear in court. At this particular time we were looking after a number of people who were involved in the disappearance of anti drug campaigner Donald McKay.
At that particular time we were baby sitting some of them in what appeared to be a derelict city Hotel and, as was normal, we were working 12 hour shifts. This particular time I was on night shift and the nights were long and boring. Generally we'd pass the time playing cards and drinking copious amounts of tea or coffee [no donut jokes please, that seems to be the realm of American coppers, not Aussie ones].
Anyway, the shift finished and somehow I ended up driving the car to get back to our home base after we were relieved by the day shift. It wasn't a long drive, maybe ten minutes, and about halfway back I was making a right hand turn into Kings Way at a green light. The view to my right was obscured by the building line and the street I was turning into actually met at an angle of about 60 degrees so I wasn't able to see anything coming from that direction. Still I had a green light so anything coming along there had to be facing a red one. As I entered the intersection there was an almighty whack in the drivers side of the car and we ended up doing a 360 turn twice ending up on the tram tracks in the middle of the road.
Like Seiche's tale, fortunately no one was seriously injured, but imagine the look on the other drivers face when the five people who got out of the car he'd just cleaned up were all wearing police uniforms. And imagine the look on my face when he said that he didn't see the red light because he was lost and reading his Melways [for those who don't know that's a Melbourne Street Directory]. And yes, I had to be restrained from punching him in the nose.