The purpose of the code is:
– To set out the responsibilities of chief officers in relation to the management of police pursuits;
– To set out the overarching framework for the management of police pursuits;
– To set out the overarching framework for selection, training and authorisation of police officers and other police staff to conduct police pursuits;
– To encourage the identification and promulgation of good practice in relation to police purposes;
– To specify the need for procedures to support post incident investigations, and post incident welfare of staff and others involved.
By fulfilling these purposes, the code will:
– Provide a framework that contributes to public safety;
– Enhance public confidence in the management of police pursuits;
– Ensure that police pursuits are undertaken only when a necessary and proportionate means of preventing crime and apprehending offenders.
The code of practice comes into effect on 23 May 2011. It is issued under:
– Section 39 of the Police Act 1996, which permits the Secretary of State to issue codes of practice relating to the discharge by police authorities of any of their functions;
– Section 39A of the same Act (as inserted by section 2 of the Police Reform Act 2002) which permits the Secretary of State to issue codes of practice relating to the discharge of functions by chief officers where necessary for the purpose of promoting the efficiency and effectiveness of police forces in England and Wales.
– Under section 39A(7) of the Police Act 1996, chief officers have a duty to have regard to this code of practice when discharging a function to which this code relates. This code must be followed unless there are good reasons not to do so, in which case the decision not to follow the code should be recorded in writing.
– This code is issued to the chief officers and police authorities of police forces maintained for the police areas of England and Wales as defined in section 1 of the Police Act 1996.
– This code is available for adoption by other non-Home Office police forces in England and Wales, and by other jurisdictions within the United Kingdom.
The code is available here: