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Distracted Driving

3-01/090.07 USE OF SEATBELTS


All personnel and passengers shall wear factory-installed safety belts and do so
consistent with the recommendations of the manufacturer while operating or riding in
County/Permittee vehicles unless exigent circumstances are present or it can be
reasonably anticipated that a sudden exit from the vehicle is a greater safety
consideration than the protection offered by the safety belt.
Seatbelt extenders shall be used as needed on a case-by-case basis. They shall be
worn only as designed and consistent with the recommendations of the manufacturer.
They shall only be permitted for use when they fit properly, their use is warranted by the
vehicle manufacturer, and the user has been made aware of the risks associated with
seatbelt extender use.
This order does not apply to passengers with physically disabling or medical conditions
which would prevent the proper utilization of factory-installed or other Departmentauthorized safety belts.
Vehicles assigned to the Training Bureau, Emergency Vehicle Operations Center unit,
for use in driver safety instruction may be equipped with a safety belt system which is
superior to the factory-installed system.

3-01/090.08 SUPERVISORS RESPONSIBILITIES


Supervisors shall be responsible for monitoring and enforcing Department members
wearing of seatbelts and the proper use of seatbelt extenders as in section 3-01/090.07.
Each level of supervision shall be held accountable by the next level of supervision for
any failure to comply with this policy.

3-01/090.10 OPERATION OF VEHICLES


For procedures regarding potential violations of this section, refer to section 309/070.45, Corrective Action.
Department members driving any type of vehicle, County or private, shall observe the
following rules of conduct:

Members shall not violate any traffic laws. They shall set a good example for
other drivers.
Members shall always employ defensive driving techniques, and an operator
shall avail himself of every reasonable means to avoid or prevent a
collision/incident.

Members shall not operate vehicles in an unsafe or negligent manner. Unsafe


backing, failure to allow for proper clearance, or failure to allow for adverse
driving surfaces or weather conditions resulting in damage to a County/Permittee
vehicle or any other vehicle or property shall be considered a violation of this
subsection.
Members, in cases of emergency, shall be guided by the laws and regulations
regarding emergency operation of vehicles.
Absent extenuating circumstances, members shall not operate a cellular
telephone while driving any marked, County-owned vehicle. When practical,
members shall use a cellular telephone headset/earpiece (e.g., Bluetooth, other
hands-free device, etc.) when engaged in a telephone conversation while driving;
however, such devices shall not be worn when the cellular (wireless) telephone is
not in use.
NOTE:

This prohibition shall apply to the use of the cellular telephone for
both voice communications as well as data (text) communications.

The radio shall be utilized as the primary tool for communication while driving a
motor vehicle.
Members shall not operate an MDT/MDC or similar device/instrument while
driving any County-owned vehicle unless one or more of the following applies:
o the driven vehicle is at rest
o the communication is of an emergent nature, and radio traffic prevents its
timely transmission
o the communication is necessary for officer safety, and radio traffic
prevents its timely transmission; and
o the communication is solely comprised of actuating the one-button signal
for the Acknowledge, En-Route, and 10-97 status updates;
Members who are in the field training program shall not use a Global Positioning
System (GPS) while driving and/or in any County-owned vehicle except in an
emergent situation. This will give the member who is in the field training program
the opportunity to learn the jurisdictional area.

3-01/100.46 USE OF COMMUNICATION DEVICES


Absent extenuating circumstances, members shall not use a cellular telephone or other
similar communication/recording device for a Department-related business purpose
(i.e., coordinating field units to a radio call, contacting a victim or witness) when an
established, Department-authorized communication device/system is available and/or a
Department-authorized regulation/protocol has been established (e.g., Department
radio/communications systems, field supervisors cellular telephone, station telephone,
etc.).
NOTE:

This prohibition shall apply to the use of the cellular telephone for both
voice communications as well as data (text) communications.

Members shall not use a personal cellular telephone or any other similar personal
communication or recording device to record, store, document, catalog, transmit, and/or
forward any image, document, scene, or environment captured as a result of their
employment and/or while performing official Department business that is not available
or accessible to the general public. Official Department business shall include, but is
not limited to, confidential, sensitive, or copyrighted information that is printed, audio
recorded, photographed, or video recorded; information related to any past, present, or
anticipated criminal, civil, or administrative investigation, including reports, declarations,
evidence, photographs, videos, or audio recordings; and/or photographs of suspects,
arrestees, defendants, evidence, or crime scenes.
NOTE:

A personal cellular telephone or any other similar personal


communication or recording device used exclusively to record contacts
with members of the public during legitimate Department business
(e.g., traffic stops, etc.) are exempt from the provisions of this section.

3-07/005.00 PRIMARY COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS

3-07/005.05 PRIMARY TOOL FOR COMMUNICATION WHILE DRIVING A MOVING


VEHICLE
The radio shall be utilized as the primary tool for communication while driving a motor
vehicle.

3-07/005.10 COMMUNICATION WHILE DRIVING A MOVING VEHICLE


Communication from a radio car to another radio car, person, watch deputy, etc., shall
be accomplished via L-TAC and not via MDT/MDC unless all involved vehicles are at
rest or one or more of the following applies:

the communication is of an emergent nature, and radio traffic prevents its timely
transmission;
the communication is necessary for officer safety, and radio traffic prevents its
timely transmission;
the communication is solely comprised of actuating the one-button signal for the
Acknowledge, En-Route, and 10-97 status updates.

3-07/005.15 SUPERVISORS
Supervisors shall monitor subordinates and enforce the primary tool for communication
while driving to ensure the safety of personnel and others.

3-07/005.20 ADMINISTRATIVE TASKS


Personnel shall not use the MDC/MDT for administrative tasks (i.e., clear calls, update
logs, or type, send, or read administrative or non-emergent messages) while driving.

3-07/005.25 TRAINING OF PRIMARY COMMUNICATION


Department units that train tactics and/or the MDC/MDT shall train tactics and the
MDC/MDT policy in accordance with the provisions for the primary tool for
communication while driving a moving vehicle policy.

3-07/050.15 INFORMATION REGARDING BROADCASTS


Information relayed by Sheriffs Communication Center (SCC) regarding broadcasts
critical to calls-for-service shall be voiced by SCC via radio, except victim identity
information, and sent to the requestors MDT/MDC. If the communication is of an
emergent nature and based on the volume of radio traffic the message would not be
received timely, the information shall be sent via the MDT/MDC and voiced as soon as
practical.

3-07/260.40 RECURRING TRAINING


Sheriffs Communication Center (SCC) shall be responsible for recurring training visits
to units to familiarize or re-familiarize personnel with proper radio procedures and
etiquette. This recurring training visit may be a scheduled training session, at briefing, or
a monitoring session of the desk operations. All recurring training visits shall be
debriefed with the units unit commander.

3-09/070.00 VEHICLE COLLISION/INCIDENT REPORTING AND INVESTIGATIONDEPARTMENT AND PERMITTEE VEHICLES


These procedures shall apply to all Department employees involved in a
collision/incident while operating a Department vehicle or a permittee vehicle on
Department business.
It is the intent of this policy that employee drivers/operators who are the cause of
preventable traffic collisions because of inattention be subject to corrective action and/or
training rather than traditional disciplinary sanctions. Refer to sections 3-09/070.45,
Corrective Action and 3-01/090.10, Operation of Vehicles.

An incident is an occurrence which involves the following:

property damage and/or personal injuries to other persons without damage to a


Department/permittee vehicle;
occurrences in which the parties to an incident allege that the collision was
caused by some act of a Department/permittees vehicle (i.e., the
Department/permittee is a non-contact party) which did not become engaged in
the collision;
policy and traffic violations within the scope of the intent of this policy deemed
precursory to collisions and their aftermath.

All collisions/incidents involving Department/permittee vehicles on duty that result in any


property damage or injury shall be reported on the County of Los Angeles Report of
Vehicle Accident or Incident form SH-AD-665.
Station, unit, and bureau commanders shall be responsible for the investigation of onduty traffic collisions involving their personnel when no injuries are sustained by the
involved parties and the collision is not Code-3 or pursuit related. This shall include
Department vehicles and all permittee vehicles being operated on official business.
NOTE:

When any injuries (including complaint of pain) are reported,


substantial property damage occurs, or when the collision is the result
of a pursuit or Code-3 Operation, refer to Volume 5, Chapter 5.

NOTE:

When minor damage is sustained only to the Department vehicle in an


off-the-road incident and the incident does not involve property
damage, other vehicles, or people, a CHP-555 and/or an outside
agency's report is not required. However, an investigation shall be
conducted by the supervisor of the concerned unit and form
SH-AD-665 and an SH-R-257 shall be completed.

The purpose of this supervisor's investigation is to enhance and aid the Department's
vehicle driver management program. The investigation and reports required herein are
in addition to any other reports currently required for traffic collisions that occur in
contract cities, CHP reports in unincorporated areas, and other agency's reports for
collisions occurring in municipalities.
The following procedures shall only be for administrative review by the Department or
the County.
Captains/Directors shall review all reported collisions and assess the incidents for
responsibilities. After evaluation, they may take appropriate corrective action for
preventable traffic collisions caused by inattention and carelessness rather than
reckless behavior (refer to section 3-01/090.10, Operation of Vehicles). Disciplinary
action within the scope of authority of a Captain/Director may be imposed for policy
violations not directly related to the operation of vehicles/traffic collisions due to

inattention. A Captain/Director may also recommend disciplinary action to Division


Chiefs or Division Director or recommend further review for policy violations not directly
related to the operation of vehicles/traffic collisions due to inattention. Division Chiefs or
Division Director may request Internal Affairs Bureau and/or the Traffic Services Detail
to complete an investigation in appropriate cases.
NOTE:

When the Traffic Collision Response Team is handling the collision


investigation, refer to Volume 5, Chapter 5.