For those new to CabbieBlog or readers who are slightly forgetful, on Saturdays I’m republishing posts, many going back over a decade. Some will still be very relevant while others have become dated over time. Just think of this post as your weekend paper supplement.
The Yellow Peril (14.08.09)
Call me a naïve cabbie, but I thought that the yellow police appeal signs were a sensible way of helping to solve crime and not merely a vulgar way to decorate London’s streets. But it would appear the bright yellow police signs appealing for witnesses to serious offences will no longer decorate London’s streets.
In an attempt to reduce “fear of crime”, the Metropolitan Police has effectively banned the use of the distinctive signs in all but exceptional circumstances. Presumably rape, murder and armed robbery don’t constitute “exceptional circumstances”, because they were the only ones to gaily bring colour to the pavements of Brixton and Peckham.
Now officers can request their use in exceptional circumstances, but any such requests must be authorised by a “specialist crime directorate commander”. So I want you all to go down to your local nick and request to talk to your “specialist crime directorate commander”. He’s not to be confused with the odd job crime directorate commander who’s in charge minor crimes like dropping litter and allowing your dog to foul the pavement.
Someone in the higher echelons of the Met has become aware that in crime hotspots several yellow signs were being put up at once and presumably thought it showed the police in a bad light, as if crime was out of control.