Northumbria Police gets new 3D scanners for investigating road collisions

Credit: Northumbria Police

Forensic officers receive laser scanners allowing them to create a virtual 3D image of the area and cars involved at a scene of a collision.

The £160,000 equipment will allow officers examining the scene to preserve evidence long after a road re-opens.

PC Alan Brown from the Forensic Collision Investigation Unit, said: “If there’s a collision on the A1, for example, and there’s hundreds of motorists either side who need to use that road – we can create a replica scene and secure all evidence, even once the road has re-opened.

“This is something we couldn’t previously do without technology.”

The scanners will help police provide detailed and undisputed evidence about fatal collisions to the courts.

We can create a scan of the vehicle and by adding in the driver’s height we can replicate exactly what they see at the moment a collision takes place – so if they claim to have a blind spot, we’d know if that was not the case.

PC Alan Brown
PCs Andy Smith and Jon Featherstone from the Forensic Collision Investigation Unit with the 3D Scanner Credit: Northumbria Police

Mr Brown said: “It’s vital for the families and loved-ones of victims that thorough investigations take place and offenders will be brought before the courts.”

A large part of our role is about getting to the bottom of exactly what happened and why, searching for answers for that person’s family and working to prevent it from happening again.

PC Alan Brown

He added that the new technology would help improve their investigations “massively.”