(JAMAICA OBSERVER) — A St Andrew-based justice of the peace (JP) has found himself in trouble with the law after a flashing blue light and siren were affixed to his BMW X6 in an effort to beat a traffic jam in New Kingston.
Under the law, emergency lights are to be used only by the police, the Jamaica Fire Brigade, and ambulances. Blue lights are used by the police, while other emergency services use red lights.
But during a pile-up in traffic in New Kingston last Wednesday the grey BMW X6 with flashing blue light and siren, was seen moving in and out of the line of vehicles on Knutsford Boulevard, causing motorists to pull over as its driver manoeuvred on the busy roadway. The incident was captured on video by a motorist who passed it on to the police.
Following an investigation the police identified the owner of the vehicle as a JP of Worthington Avenue in New Kingston.
“This is what happens when members of the public share the information with us of breaches on the road. We have been getting videos and calls and we have investigated all of them. We urge the public to continue to share images and videos of errant motorists with us,” an officer close the investigation told the Jamaica Observer.
The police source said the JP, whose name is being withheld, told investigators that the flashing blue light and siren were affixed to the vehicle by his driver. But that did not stop the police from removing the illegal items from the vehicle and issuing him a $2,500 ticket for “aiding and abetting the coloured light and siren on a vehicle”.
The driver, who resides at Sandringham Avenue in Kingston, and whose name is also being withheld, was also issued a $2,500 ticket for “using a coloured light and siren on a vehicle”.
They are both scheduled to appear in the Traffic Court in Kingston on December 16.
Following reports late last year that criminals were using unmarked vehicles with flashing blue lights as they embarked on crime sprees, the Police High Command urged motorists to desist.
“Motorists who have modified their vehicles with flashing lights and/or sirens that imitate those used by authorised emergency vehicles, such as police vehicles, ambulances and fire engines, are being warned to remove them immediately,” said the high command in a release.
“Motorists who ignore this warning to remove the devices will not only face inconvenience, but more so the full brunt of the law, including the seizure of the vehicles to have them removed forthwith,” the high command added.