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Posted: 10/9/2004 12:02:17 PM EDT
Hey guys,

Whenever watching a high speed chase on COPS, the same thing seems to happen every time.

The suspect finally bails (usually the result of a crash) and then half a dozen patrol cars come to a stop and all of the officers are off in foot pursuit with out turning off their sirens.

Mass confusion seems to erupt as everyone is running and shouting to be heard.

Why on earth don't aren't the sirens wired to stop when the patrol car is put in park ?

There could always be a manual override if in some unusual case you need the siren while stopped.

This seems like it could be a safety issue to me if an officer can not communicate properly due to the siren or is distracted by it while trying to apprehend a suspect.

Am I missing something here, or is this just something that manufacturers never got around to doing ???

Link Posted: 10/9/2004 12:05:24 PM EDT
Most of our siren units look like they are from 1957 and I have been bitching about upgrading them for some time. I would be all for something like you mentioned. Figure out how to do it and market it! you could make yourself some money!!
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 12:13:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/9/2004 12:15:18 PM EDT by cjklekar]
Ed, we can't give up THAT secret because it is inextricably tied to the magic moment when the Krispy Kreme neon sign lights up and a secret decoder goes off on our MDT letting us know that the doughnuts are fresh out of the grease... Code 3, enroute...

Seriously, it is a problem...but when you're in a stress situation, you kind of lose your auditory sensory perception. You can only hope that there's a more experienced veteran officer who too old to chase the crook(s) (that's why God made younger officers) who'll go into the car and turn off the siren for you so he can hear what communications is telling the rest of us. Some cars are wired to momentarily shut off the siren when you engage the mic. Cars now days are so well sealed you can have the siren wailing and still have a normal conversation...

Hope this answers your question.

edited for grammar & speling [sic]
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 12:22:10 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cjklekar:
You can only hope that there's a more experienced veteran officer who too old to chase the crook(s) (that's why God made younger officers) who'll go into the car and turn off the siren for you so he can hear what communications is telling the rest of us.

I'm an older cop and can chase crooks (especially up stairs) as good if not better than the younger guys.

Don't run cause I / we'll get ya.

To answer the question.

When they & you bail, it's the last thing on your mind. Most police cars are set up like they've been for years. It would be a good idea but it would be another thing to burn up and go bad.


Link Posted: 10/9/2004 12:26:22 PM EDT
Mine is supposed to cut off if you tap the horn twice, but it doesn't always work, and the taps have to be precise.

Lately, there have been more than a few cop cars stolen locally when the BG circles back to the unoccupied and unsecured patrol cars. Please, take a minute and LOCK THE DANGED CAR UP!
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 7:13:35 PM EDT
Colt_SBR, I'm one of those older cops who can't run very well because of bad knees. I'm glad you can still out do the youngsters!

BTW, I mostly fly a desk these days...
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 9:43:15 PM EDT
Certain sirens can be wired with a park/neutral cut out. Mine has a Federal Touchmaster with that installed. A lot of other sirens don't have that available. If they do the department either doesn't know about it, or they try to save a little money and don't buy it.
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 9:50:31 PM EDT
Our sirens are wired to only wail when out of park
Link Posted: 10/9/2004 11:59:28 PM EDT
ours shut off when you put it in park
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 2:12:34 PM EDT
I'm willing to bet the reason why a lot of departments don't have this feature on their patrol car is one thing $$$$$!!!!

Link Posted: 10/10/2004 2:29:53 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 2:32:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Henny:
I'm willing to bet the reason why a lot of departments don't have this feature on their patrol car is one thing $$$$$!!!!

I suspect that it's more just apathy or lack of electrical knowledge. All cars made today have a limit switch to detect when the car is in park/neutral. This switch is in the transmission and is typically wired in series with the start circuitry to prevent starting when not in park/neutral.

All it would take is wiring this switch to a relay to disable the siren. I would not be surprised if sirens today already have a built in enable/disable relay that just requires wiring to this switch.

Oh well...I'm an engineer not an administrator....
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 5:29:36 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/10/2004 9:16:08 PM EDT
Whelen, Code 3 and Federal Signal, all newer sirens have a park-kill wiring option that is compatible w/ most of your common police cruisers, if not all. It's just the fact that alot of your cruiser mechanics haven't the slightest idea of where or how to hook it up, even though it comes w/ instructions.

As for why it always works like that on Cops, if you've ever been in a pursuit, you would know that 9 times out of 10, the adrenaline gets to pumping so hard that the only thing on their mind is stopping that vehicle. I have seen it too many times where the officer gets to excited during a chase. There have been alot of instances here where a deputy would get on the Radio telling the driver to pull over instead of being on the Public Address system. Pursuits are very stressful, so most times I would say it's just the farthest thing on their mind.

Link Posted: 10/12/2004 3:42:15 PM EDT
After a few pursuits you tend to hit the magic red button before you bail but somebody else has had one less pursuit than you and doesn't do that. I got in a long involved foot chase and my car was left in a nice residential neighborhood at 3am all locked up wailing for 45 minutes as I ran through the woods listening to my car as I ran and ran and ran. Boy were some people really pissed. No one could turn it off because it was locked up. I thought it was funny no one else did.
Link Posted: 10/16/2004 5:16:24 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/16/2004 5:19:37 PM EDT by RandomUser]
Simple Answer:

99.9% of the time, the people who order gear, set-up vehicles and such have almost ZERO contact with the folks that actually have to USE said gear/vehicle.

In many agencies...these folks are civillians who have never been a cop. Other times, they are sworn officers who have been out of the loop for so long that they don't know what officers on the street need. Also very common is cost. When cars wear out, equipment that is installed in them is torn out and dumped in the new fleet. Brand new car....10 year old radio box and light controls. At my PD...I worked there for 6 years before the layout was standardized. The didn't even assign cars at rollcall...instead in was a mad-dash out the back to claim that car that was the least POS of the fleet. This is for a shift of 35+ patrol officers, not including Supes. For years I'd drive a different car every day...each one with controls for lights, siren, radios etc in a different place. Half the time I'd get into a car that didn't even have a charger for my MagLite.

I'd drive cars that had no base radio or cars with MARS lights so old they were about as bright as a birthday candle.

We begged for YEARS to get a parking shut-off for the sirens, to have equipment layout standardized, for all cars to get the same light/siren set-up, to get siren TAP fucntion in the horn, to get computers in the cars...

City governments want you to be 110% perfect all the time, never make a mistake, never have to punch a suspect or use your flashlight as an impact weapon, but they don't give you the tools to do the job. God forbid you should ask for deccent gear. They have better things to do, like put up all those fancy 'Historical District' street signs up in the rundown, rathole ghettos. The only thing historic in those places is the age of the crack vials and spent brass from drive-bys that are laying in the gutter.

My city spent 33 million dollars to refurbish an island park in the middle of a river that ran through our town. It was real purty. The bums loved it. Nobody else would go near it, cause it was in the highest crime area of town.

But authorize city funds for OT to clean the place out, step-up enforcement, purchase new gear....god forbid.

Link Posted: 10/16/2004 6:03:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By k9dpd:
ours shut off when you put it in park

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