The national police have reminded motorists that vehicles displaying a “blue light” have an absolute right of way, and warned that failure to move would land them in hot water.
THE NATIONAL police have reminded motorists that vehicles displaying a “blue light” have an absolute right of way, and warned that failure to move would land them in hot water.
The warning comes after the arrest of a 54-year-old man who refused to “back away” for the convoy of a foreign VIP, which resulted in his arrest.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Athlenda Mathe said the man was warned repeatedly by traffic officials and the police who were escorting the VIP to Lanseria Airport, Johannesburg, on Sunday.
Despite the warning, the man allegedly tried to enter the motorcade, not once or twice, but three times.
Mathe said it was on the third attempt that the police pulled him over and arrested him. He is expected to appear before the Krugersdorp Magistrate’s Court soon to face charges of reckless and negligent driving.
The police spokesperson stressed that according to the National Road Traffic Act, vehicles displaying a blue light have absolute right of way when it is safe to do so.
“Motorists are urged to give way for them. The public are reminded that blue lights may only be fitted on vehicles operated by members of the South African Police Service, and municipal police services, traffic officers, and members of the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) military police.”
Mathe further warned: “Civilians will be guilty of a crime if found to be utilising blue lights.”
This is not the first time that members of the public have clashed with the ‘Blue Light Brigade’, with one incident involving members of the Presidential Protection Services (PPS), who were caught on video assaulting people on the N1 highway in Gauteng.
The officers, who were reportedly part of Deputy President Paul Mashatile’s security detail convoy, were escorting Mashatile home, however, things escalated after the driver of a car allegedly tried to get close to Mashatile’s vehicle.
The officers were suspended by the police following the incident.