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General Policy Information


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Cross Reference

Latest Revision Date: 12/1/2014

Title 1 - Department Administration

1.010 - Authority and Jurisdiction

1.020 - Chain of Command

1.030 - Department Span of Control Chart

1.040 - Budget

1.050 - Grants

1.060 - Consultant Contract Administration

1.070 - Training

1.080 - Inspection and Audits

1.090 - Ticket Chain of Custody

1.100 - Ticket Audits

1.110 - Media Relations

Title 2 - Department Employment

2.020 - Appointments and Probation

2.030 - Retirements and Separations

2.050 - Collective Bargaining and Contract Management

2.060 - Grievances

2.070 - Performance Evaluations

Title 3 - Employee Welfare

3.035 - Reasonable Accommodation (ADA)

3.040 – Airborne Pathogens Control

3.045 - Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control

3.050 - Coordinating Officer Fatalities

3.070 - Performance Mentoring Program

3.080 - Travel Training System

3.090 - Employee Recognition Awards Program

3.170 - Honoring Those Killed in the Line of Duty

3.270 - Police Charity Committee

3.290 - Pre-Service/In-Service and Specialized Training

3.330 - Workplace Safety

3.340 - Employee Involvement Committees_JLMC

Title 4 - Human Resources

4.000 - Employee Move Tracking System (EMT)

4.005 - Police Employee Data System (PEDS)

4.010 - Employee Time Off

4.015 - Restricted Time Off for a Pre-Planned Event

4.020 - Reporting and Recording Overtime/Out of Classification Pay

4.030 - Jury Duty

4.040 - Sick Leave

4.050 - On-Duty Illness or Injury

4.060 - Long Term Disability Benefits

4.070 - Limited Duty Assignments

4.080 - Pregnancy

4.090 - Leave of Absence Without Pay

4.100 – Family and Medical Leave

4.110 - Sick Leave Donation

4.120 - Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Leave

4.130 - Military Leave

4.140 - Military Spouse/Domestic Partner Leave

4.150 - Funeral Leave

Title 5 - Employee Conduct

5.001 - Standards and Duties

5.002 - Responsibilities of Employees Concerning Complaints of Possible Misconduct

5.010 - Civil Actions

5.020 - Gifts and Gratuities

5.030 - Preparing for Criminal Case Interviews

5.040 - EEO Complaints and Investigations

5.060 - Employee Political Activity

5.090 - Operations Bureau General Personnel Matters

5.100 - Operations Bureau Individual Responsibilities

5.120 - Secondary Employment

5.130 - Supervisor/Employee Relationships

5.140 - Bias-Free Policing

Bias-Free Policing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

5.150 - Use of Private Vehicles for City Business

5.160 - Citizen Observation of Officers

5.170 - Alcohol and Substance Use

5.175 - Critical Incident Stress Management Communications

5.190 - Court Appearances and Legal Proceedings

5.200 - Americans With Disabilities Act

Title 6 - Arrests, Search and Seizure

6.010 - Reporting Arrests and Detentions

6.020 - Arrests and Detentions of Foreign Nationals

6.030 - Body Cavity Searches

6.060 - Collection of Information for Law Enforcement Purposes

6.120 - Impounding Vehicles

6.130 - Informant Management

6.135 - Cooperating Witnesses

6.140 - Locating a Cell Phone during an Emergency

6.150 - Advising Persons of Miranda

6.180 - Searches-General

6.181 - Performing Inventory Searches

6.185 - Search Warrants

6.210 - Strip Searches

6.220 - Voluntary Contacts, Terry Stops & Detentions

6.250 - Use of Non-SPD Canines

6.280 - Warrant Arrests

6.290 - Juvenile Investigations and Arrests

Title 7 - Evidence and Property

7.010 - Submitting Evidence

7.020 - Found Property

7.030 - Firearms & Shell Casings

7.040 - Dangerous or Hazardous Evidence

7.050 - Checking Out Evidence for Court

7.060 - Releasing Evidence

7.070 - Converting Evidence for Department Use

7.080 - Money Evidence

7.090 - Photographic Evidence

7.100 - Fingerprint Evidence

7.110 - Recorded Statements

7.120 - Narcotics Evidence

7.130 – Narcotics Training Aid and Investigative Use Drug Property Release

7.140 – Firearm Training Aid and Investigative Use

7.150 - Non-Detainee Property for Safekeeping

Title 8 - Use of Force

8.000 - Use of Force Core Principles

8.050 - Use of Force Definitions

8.100 - Using Force

8.200 - Use of Force Tools

8.210 - OC Chain of Custody

8.300 - Use of Force Reporting and Investigation

Use of Force Public Safety Statement Card

Investigating Supervisor Scene Guide

Investigating Supervisor Precinct Guide

Investigating Supervisor Documentation Guide

Involved Officer Statement Guide

Witness Officer Statement Guide

8.400 - Reviewing Use of Force

Reviewing Lieutenant Guide

Reviewing Captain Guide

8.500 - Firearms Discharge Investigations

Officer Involved Shooting-Public Safety Statement Card

8.600 - Review of Firearms Discharges

Use-of-Force Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Title 9 - Equipment and Uniforms

9.010 - Employee Dress Standards

9.020 - Uniform

9.030 - Equipment

Equipment Reference Catalog

9.040 - Uniform and Equipment Committee

9.050 - Clothing Allowance and Reimbursement for Personal Property

9.060 - Firearms

9.065 - Firearms Training and Qualification

9.100 - Department Firearms Management

Title 10 - Police Facilities & Security

10.010 - Parking at Department Facilities

10.020 - Physical Security of Police Facilities

10.060 - Holding Cell Camera System

Title 11 - Detainee Management

11.010 - Detainee Management in Department Facilities

11.020 - Transportation of Detainees

11.030 - Guarding Detainees at a Hospital

11.040 - Booking Adult Detainees

11.050 - Detainee Property

Title 12 - Department Information Systems

12.010 - Communications

12.030 - Computer Hardware & Devices

12.040 - Computer Software

12.045 - Booking Photo Comparison Software

12.050 - Criminal Records

12.055 - Criminal Justice Research

12.060 - Department Forms Control

12.070 - Department Publications

12.080 - Department Records Access, Inspection & Dissemination

12.090 - Departmental Correspondence

12.091 - Mobile Reporting Entity (MRE) Laptops

12.110 - Use of Department E-mail & Internet Systems

12.111 - Use of Cloud Storage Services

12.120 - Telephone and Facsimile Machine Use

Title 13 - Vehicle Operations

13.010 - Collisions Involving Department Vehicles

13.015 - Collision Review Board

13.030 - Emergency Vehicle Operations

13.031 - Vehicle Eluding/Pursuits

13.040 - Patrol Operations Equipment, Police Vehicles and Facilities

13.050 - Policing by Mountain Bike

13.060 - Specialty Vehicles & Equipment

13.080 - Use of Department Vehicles

Title 14 - Emergency Operations

14.010 - After-Action Reports

14.040 - Hazardous Conditions

14.060 - Serious Incident Plan

14.070 - Serious Injury or Fatality to a Police Officer

14.080 - Task Force Mobilization

14.090 - Demonstration Management

ICS Debrief Form

14.100 - Special Event Planning

Title 15 - Primary Investigation

15.010 - Arson Investigations

15.015 – Bomb Threats and Explosive Devices

15.020 - Charge by Officer

15.055 - Death Investigations

15.080 - Follow-up Unit Notification and Follow-up Investigation

15.090 - Graffiti Incidents

15.100 - Kidnapping

15.120 - Malicious Harassment

15.130 - Missing Persons

15.140 - Narcotics Activity Report

15.150 - Narcotics

15.160 - Marijuana Enforcement

15.180 - Primary Investigations

15.185 - Vulnerable Adults-Elder Abuse and Neglect

15.190 - Theft and Recovery of Vehicle, License Plates, or License Tabs

15.200 - Retail Theft Program

15.210 - Investigating Property Held by a Pawnshop or Used-Goods Store

15.215 - Domestic Violence Firearms Surrender

15.220 - Child Welfare

15.230 - Animal Control

15.240 - Boating Accidents

15.250 - Interpreters/Translators

15.260 - Collision Investigations

15.270 - Trespass Warning Program

15.275 - Enforcing Trespass in Parks

15.280 - DUI Investigations

15.290 - Stay Out of Areas of Prostitution (SOAP)

15.300 - Stay Out of Drug Areas (SODA)-Define Boundaries

15.310 - Foreign Nationals Seeking Asylum

15.320 - Police Action on Military Reservations

15.330 - Responding to Threats and Assaults on Officers

15.340 - Robbery Response

15.350 - Significant Incident Report

15.360 - Mobile Identification Devices

15.370 - Sexual Assault Investigation

Title 16 - Patrol Operations

16.010 - Adult Entertainment

16.020 - Alley Closure

16.030 - Citizen Rider Program

16.040 - Community Police Teams

16.050 - Death Notifications

16.070 - Responding to Monitored Alarms

16.080 - Fireworks Disposal and Disposition

16.090 - In Car Video System

16.091 - Body-Worn Video Pilot Program

16.100 - Patrol Training and Publications

16.110 - Crisis Intervention

16.130 - Sick and Injured Persons

16.135 - Excited Delirium

16.140 - Traffic Direction and Control

16.150 - Snow and Ice Plan

16.160 - Ticket Vendors

16.170 - Automatic License Plate Readers

16.180 - Patrol Operations Order

16.190 - Labor Management Disputes

16.230 - Issuing Tickets and Traffic Contact Reports

16.231 - Cancelling and Voiding Tickets

16.240 - Mutual Assistance

16.250 - Interaction with the University of Washington Police Department

15.240 – Boating Accidents

Effective Date: 7/29/2008


Seattle Municipal Code Title 16 (Harbor Code) defines the “Port Warden” of the City as the Chief of Police and any duly authorized deputies or assistants acting on the Chief’s behalf. Listed as a specific duty is the investigation and reporting of marine and maritime accidents in the harbor. The Department’s Harbor Patrol Unit has the primary responsibility of ensuring safety and security on the public waterways of the City. This includes investigating most boating accidents. If the Harbor Patrol Unit is unavailable, boating accidents will be investigated by other officers. Boating accident forms are available at all precincts. The Harbor Patrol Unit and Traffic Collision Investigation Squad (TCIS) may be contacted if further assistance is needed.

I. Definitions

A. Boat: Any vessel or watercraft used or capable of being used as a means of transportation on the water.

1. It does not include inner tubes, air mattresses, small flimsy rafts, or floatation devices used as toys by swimmers.

B. Operator: An individual who steers, directs, or otherwise has physical control of a vessel that is underway or exercises actual authority to control the person at the helm.

C. Owner: A person who has a lawful right to possession of a vessel by purchase, exchange, gift, lease, inheritance, or legal action whether or not the vessel is subject to a security interest.

II. Primary Investigating Officer at a Boating Accident Scene

A. The Harbor Patrol Unit shall be called to the scene of all boating accidents or collisions, and all water emergencies.

B. Officers who are not assigned to the Harbor Patrol Unit may be required to investigate a boating accident if the Harbor Patrol Unit is unavailable.

III. Documentation Requirements for Boating Accidents

A. Documentation requirements for boating accidents can be complicated and depending on the circumstances more than one report may be necessary.

B. The investigation of a boating accident may simply require a General Offense Report. However, more serious accidents will require that the boat operator or owner complete a Boating Accident Report (BAR) and submit it to the Harbor Patrol Unit. Boating accidents that result in death or injury requiring hospitalization will additionally require a Boating Accident Investigation Report (BAIR), which the primary investigating officer at the scene will complete.

1. General Offense Report.

a. Boating accidents can be documented on a General Offense Report if they meet any of the following criteria:

(1) Damage greater than $500.00 to any involved boat or other property.

(2) “Hit and Run” with less than $500.00 damage and no injuries that require medical treatment beyond first aid.

(3) City property or boat is involved with less than $500.00 damage and no injuries that require medical treatment beyond first aid.

(4) Whenever a citizen requests that a report be taken.

2. Boating Accident Report (BAR).

a. The BAR is a Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission form.

b. The BAR is required when boating accidents meet any of the following criteria:

(1) Death.

(2) Injury which required medical treatment beyond first aid.

(3) Property damage in excess of $500.00, or the complete loss of a vessel.

(4) The disappearance of a person from a vessel under circumstances that indicate death or injury.

c. Officers will instruct the boat operator to complete a BAR and return it to the Harbor Patrol Unit (1717 N. Northlake Place, Seattle WA 98103). The BAR has instructions printed on the front of the multi-page form.

(1) If the operator is incapacitated, deceased or otherwise unable to complete the BAR, it will be given to the boat owner to complete and submit to the Harbor Patrol Unit.

(2) If the operator and owner are both incapacitated, deceased or otherwise unable to complete the BAR, then the primary investigating officer will complete it and deliver it to the Harbor Patrol Unit.

d. The Harbor Patrol Unit is ultimately responsible for routing the BAR to the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission office in Olympia.

e. Time requirements for completing and submitting the BAR:

(1) In cases of death or injury requiring medical treatment beyond first aid, the BAR must be forwarded to Olympia within 48 hours.

(a) In all other cases, the BAR must be forwarded to Olympia within ten days. Officers will instruct the operator or owner to complete the form as soon as possible and mail it or hand deliver it to the Harbor Patrol Unit.

3. Boat Accident Investigation Report (BAIR):

a. The BAIR is a Washington State Parks & Recreation form (P&R A-425).

b. The BAIR is always completed by the primary investigating officer and is required when boating accidents meet either of the following criteria:

(1) Death.

(2) Injury requiring hospitalization.

c. Complete the Boat Accident Investigation Report (BAIR) as thoroughly as possible, obtain supervisory approval and deliver it to the Harbor Patrol Unit.

(1) The BAIR must be forwarded to the Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission office in Olympia within 48 hours.

IV. Boating Accidents Requiring the Presence of the Traffic Collision Investigation Squad (TCIS)

A. Accidents which have resulted in the death of any person.

B. Accidents in which the officer feels the injuries are serious enough that someone may die.

C. Serious hit and run accidents which involve injuries.

D. Accidents involving City equipment where serious injuries or extensive property damage has occurred.

E. Missing persons under circumstances that indicate death or injury.

F. Notify the Harbor Patrol Unit any time TCIS is called out.

V. Impounds

A. Authority to Impound

1. Probable cause exists to believe that the boat constitutes evidence of a crime or contains evidence of a crime.

2. The operator appears incapable of safely operating the boat.

3. The operator refuses or neglects to obey an order to proceed from or to an area following a citation or in an emergency.

4. The operator operates a boat in a negligent, reckless or other manner so as to endanger the safety of others or to interfere with the navigation of other watercraft; and the officer believes that impoundment is necessary to stop such operation.

5. The vessel, watercraft, or obstruction appears unsafe for water transportation.

6. The vessel, watercraft, or obstruction appears abandoned, or is anchored or moored in an anchorage, waterway or submerged street area after expiration, cancellation, or violation of a permit, or in violation of SMC 16.32.020.D without a permit seventy-two (72) hours after an order to remove the same has been given as provided in SMC 16.32.020.E.

7. The vessel, watercraft or obstruction is obstructing a launch ramp area or public dock.

B. Procedures

1. Complete the Vessel, Watercraft, or Obstruction Theft and Impound Report (Form 5.42).

2. Notify the Harbor Unit to arrange for the boat to be towed. All impounds will be stored at the Harbor Patrol Unit boat shed on Lake Union.

VI. Collisions involving a Harbor Patrol Unit Boat

A. Any collision involving a Harbor Patrol Unit boat shall be reported immediately and investigated regardless of injury, death, or degree of damage.

1. If a Harbor Patrol Unit boat is involved in a collision, the officer operating the boat will have the same basic responsibilities as an officer involved in an on-duty motor vehicle accident:

a. Check for injuries and render first aid.

b. Notify a Harbor Patrol Unit sergeant immediately.

c. Remain at the scene until relieved by a Harbor Patrol Unit sergeant.

d. Complete an Officer Statement (form 9.27) and a diagram.

2. The Harbor Patrol Unit sergeant’s responsibilities:

a. Upon arrival, ensure that any injured persons have been cared for.

b. Ensure that a Harbor Patrol Unit officer (not involved in the collision) is assigned to complete the primary investigation and the appropriate reports (see II, III and IV).

(1) Determine if TCIS should be called (see IV).

(2) The Harbor Patrol Unit sergeant has the option of calling TCIS to request a response, even if the situation does not require their presence.

c. If TCIS is not responding to the collision, the HPU sergeant will ensure that:

(1) The collision scene is photographed with a minimum of four photographs to include:

(a) The Harbor Patrol Unit boat.

(b) The other boat or property involved.

(c) At least two different views of the scene.

3. Notify the Harbor Patrol Unit Lieutenant

a. This notification will be made at the earliest opportunity (on a twenty-four hour basis) when the collision involves injuries or there is significant damage.

b. If the Harbor Patrol Unit Lieutenant is unavailable, the captain of the Homeland Security Bureau will be notified.

c. If the collision occurs after normal business hours, the Duty Captain will also be notified.