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PSF-2.08 - Vehicle Collision Review Board

VEHICLE COLLISION REVIEW BOARD
Administrative Rules Adopted by Police Bureau Pursuant to Rule-Making Authority
ARB-PSF-2.08

 
POLICY (640.52)
Collisions involving Bureau assigned vehicles will be investigated and reviewed by a panel of peers. This function will be carried out by the Collision Review Board (CRB) which meets the requirements of the City for a Fleet Accident Review Board (FARB).

 
PROCEDURE (640.52)
 
The Collision Review Board
The CRB will consist of ten members, including the Loss Control manager who will serve as the chairperson. The remainder of the CRB will be comprised of representatives from the following divisions: Traffic, Training, Detectives, Fleet and five representatives from precinct operations. It is not mandatory that each RU be represented individually. The RU manager of an outgoing board member will determine his/her replacement.
 
The CRB will meet monthly at a regularly set time and location. A minimum of five CRB members must be present to conduct a meeting. All collisions and damage involving Bureau assigned vehicles with another vehicle, object, or person will be reviewed, except collisions resulting from the use of techniques as defined by DIR 630.05.
 
The CRB serves two main functions in the review of Bureau vehicle collisions:
a. Ensure that investigations and documentation are complete.
b. Make a recommendation for finding on all cases reviewed and submit the recommendation to the appropriate RU manager for consideration.
Collision Review Process (640.52)
Copies of all reports that are generated from a vehicle collision investigation are to be sent through channels to Police Liability Management (PLM). These include, but are not limited to, accident reports, Special Reports, After Action Reports and City Traffic Accident Reports. Files will be established for each case and copies distributed to the CRB for their review. If these documents are not received in their entirety, the CRB may elect to send the case back for further investigation prior to hearing the case.
 
The CRB will consider only the facts and circumstances of each individual case. A member’s past driving history will have no bearing on the recommendation given.
 
PLM will notify members of the date, time and location of the CRB meeting that will be reviewing their case. Members will have an opportunity to attend the meeting when their case is reviewed. If the members wish to attend the CRB meeting, and are unable to do so, arrangements can be made with PLM to have the case rescheduled to the following month. Members attending a CRB meeting will be given an opportunity to speak concerning the circumstances of the collision and may be asked questions by the CRB to assist in their understanding of the incident.
 
Upon completion of each case, the CRB will make a recommendation for finding to the member’s RU manager. The recommendation for finding, along with the investigation completed by the member’s supervisor, will assist in the final determination. If the CRB finds that an investigation is incomplete, the case may be sent back to the investigating supervisor for follow up.
 
The CRB’s recommendation for finding will be based on criteria established by the National Traffic Safety Council (i.e., did the driver do everything reasonable to avoid the collision?). Recommendation categories include:
a. Preventable – (i.e., the driver failed to recognize a hazardous condition or circumstance and failed to take appropriate action to maintain control of the vehicle and avoid a collision.).
b. Non-preventable – (i.e., the driver did recognize a hazardous condition or circumstances and took appropriate action to maintain control of the vehicle and avoid a collision.).
c. Not an Accident – (i.e., when a collision and investigation had been initiated and concluded that there was a deliberate action taken by a driver that resulted in damage or injury, or that a non-deliberate action had occurred, but it was later determined that there was no damage and no injury.).
Members are often required to drive under circumstances that are unusual and at times extreme. The determination of preventable/non-preventable by the CRB must be tempered by the nature and significance of the mission at hand.
 
Members will not be notified at the time of the meeting of the CRB’s recommendation for finding. The RU manager will give notice to the member of the final determination.
Should the recommendation of the CRB be in conflict with initial supervisory recommendations, the CRB will submit an additional memorandum to the RU manager explaining the CRB’s rationale.
 
If an RU manager finds a case to be preventable, he/she will make a recommendation, including discipline, to the Branch chief. It is the responsibility of the RU manager to notify PLM of their recommended discipline and when the discipline has been completed, as PLM maintains the driver history information for Bureau members.
 
Should the RU manager’s final decision be in conflict with the recommendation of the CRB, a memorandum will be submitted by the RU manager to his/her Branch chief, with a copy to the CRB, explaining his/her decision.
 
The CRB will not make a recommendation for specific discipline and will not track this process. However, since the ultimate outcome of collision investigations is possible disciplinary action, Bureau policies for disciplinary action will be followed.

The CRB will produce an annual report for RU managers and, when necessary, identify factors that may lead to improved training and education. The CRB will produce a monthly summation of the recommendations for finding given at each meeting.

 
 References
 
City Code 3.58.060 Fleet Accident Review Boards
DIR 341.00 Disciplinary Process
DIR 630.05 Vehicle Pursuits
DIR 640.50 Traffic Accidents Investigations

 
HISTORY
Revised document effective January 20, 2006 and filed in PPD April 21, 2006.
Submitted for inclusion in PPD March 6, 2002.
Originally published as Directive 640.52 of the Portland Police Bureau Manual of Policy and Procedure.