A POLICE driver responding to an emergency call was not to blame for a crash with two other cars in Fife, which left an 87-year-old man needing hospital treatment, the police watchdog has found.

He was among four people taken to hospital after the collision in Kirkcaldy on March 8.

Three people had to be cut free from the wreckage.

The police car was responding to a report of a stolen vehicle being driven dangerously in Falkirk and had its emergency blue lights and sirens on when the crash happened.

Earlier that day, the stolen vehicle had hit a member of the public, leaving them seriously injured.

An investigation by the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (Pirc) found that as the emergency vehicle was being driven along Oriel Road towards the junction at Strathallan Drive, a Kia driven by an 87-year-old man moved forward on to the road and into its path.

The police driver did not have time to take evasive action and his car collided with the offside of the Kia, causing it to then collide with an Audi TT.

The driver of the Kia was seriously injured, while the woman driving the Audi and the driver and passenger in the police car were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

A Pirc report found the police driver was “not at fault for the collision”.

It said: “The Kia car initially positioned in the bell mouth of the junction at Strathallan Drive, failed to see the police car approaching on Oriel Road and pulled out from the junction into the path of the oncoming police car.

“The police driver was unable to take evasive action and the two vehicles collided, causing the Kia to subsequently collide with another oncoming car.”

A man was later reported by police to the procurator fiscal in relation to the collision but no action was taken.

The PIRC report highlighted that the officer driving the car was a trained police advanced driver and the police vehicle had its emergency lights and sirens activated at the time of the collision.

It added that the video recording equipment fitted to the police car was found to be faulty and did not record the collision.