Woman dies after being struck by police car

  • 2000-04-13
  • By Kairi Kurm
TALLINN - A police squad car hit a 76-year-old woman on a pedestrian crosswalk on the evening of April 8 on Kotka Street in Tallinn. The woman died at the scene 30 minutes later.

According to Kaia Kalliver, spokeswoman for Tallinn Police Prefecture, the two policemen involved were driving an allegedly disorderly suspect to a place of detention. Witnesses give differing accounts of the accident.

"According to the police and witnesses, the police car, an Opel Astra, had lights flashing and siren going," said Kalliver. Some witnesses said on the other hand, that the police car turned on the flashing lights and the signal right after the accident. A saleswoman from a nearby kiosk told the tabloidOhtuleht that she did not hear the signal and did not notice any special lights before the accident.

According to some witnesses, the police car drove with a great speed at about 100 kilometers an hour although the speed limit on that street is 50 kilometers an hour. The car left about a 60-meter-long skid mark on the road.and dragged the woman almost 50 meters away from the crosswalk.

Police had followed procedures, Kalliver said.

"If the police find it necessary to use special lights and a signal, they have the right to do it. The criminal case will specify, whether it was necessary or not," said Kalliver. "Staff in police cars use special effects in order to draw attention and people should make way for the police cars in order to avoid dangerous situations. The police should at the same time secure traffic safety."

She said that the 25 year old policeman driving the police car and his partner were in shock after the accident and took time off without pay.