Does driving inspectorate know how to stop a runaway without “live shield”?

ERB has decided to find out how could a runaway driving at the speed of 160 km/h be stopped without “a live shield”. Furthermore, inspectors will have to give account for the actions The head of the driving inspectorate department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Alyaksandr Mendzeleu could not say anything about it. He only said that inspectors had to do everything to avoid casualties. When ERB asked him what he would have done it he had been there at that moment, he replied that he would have decided it according to the circumstances.

Alyaksandr Mendzeleu: “You can choose different methods. It is not easy to give the answer. There is no cure-all. It was Sunday, there were a number of cars passing by, some other questions arose. There is no heal-all. Nobody knows who is in the car. What if it were a frightened child? Nobody knew it was a drunken driver who had three previous convictions”.

ERB posed the same question to the acting head of Slutsk driving inspectorate Alyaksandr Tumas. Let us remind you that Slutsk inspectors were following the runaway driver almost till Minsk. However, the acting head did not want to tell us what he would have done in the place of his subordinates and refused to give any comments.

Alyaksandr Tumas: “You see, I refuse to comment on it”.

Only the deputy head of the republican driving inspectorate Ihar Vanitski shared his opinion about the methods inspectors should have used while trying to stop the runaway on the route Minsk-Miklashevichy. According to him, they should have made the driver turn to the ring road instead of creating “a shield”.

Іhar Vanіtskі: “If I had time, I would have sent transport to the ring road and put “pins” behind it”.

According to experts, if pins pierce the tyres of a car driven at the speed of 160 km/h the car will surely be pushed to the ditch and the passengers will have no chance to survive. However, it would not stop the deputy head of the driving inspectorate. He says he sees no other way out.

Іhar Vanіtskі: “I see no other way out. What it had collided with a scheduled bus and a fire had started? What if all those people had not been able to get out? What would have happened?”

According to him, inspectors had the right to use private cars to stop the runaway. However, he did not explain anything and refused to tell anything else about it”.

Іhar Vanіtskі: “We had the right to do it. But I will not tell you what we had to do according to the instructions”.

ERB asked the head of the extreme driving school Syarhei Auchynnikau about ways of stopping a car driven at the speed of 160 km/h. According to him, any attempt to stop such a car with the help of pins, bullets or ramming it from behind with the help of a driving inspectors’ car would have resulted in death. Driving inspectors could also die.

Syarhei Auchynnіkau: “Ramming or piercing the tyres would result in three corpses in one car and that car would have a very little chance of remaining on the road. So it would just mean killing all those people”.

He thinks that the only thing that could have been done is gradually “decreasing” the speed of the runaway with obstacles. However, he noted that it would have taken some time.

Syarhei Auchynnіkau: “Only decreasing the speed step by step – there had to be some obstacles installed to make the driver slow down. He wouldn’t have driven around pylons but they had to make cars drive along one lane. Was it possible? I doubt it”.

As ERB informed, the Office of the Public Prosecutor started a criminal aces in connection with the incident on the Misnk-Miklashevichy highway. The head of the driving inspectorate department of the Ministry of Internal Affaires Alyaksandr Mendzeleu informed that they had started an internal investigation. However, it is too early to say what will happen to the inspectors who conducted “the detention”.