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'New' Italian Police Car - Lamborghini Crash

Outline
Circulating message includes a series of photographs depicting the launch of a Lamborghini police car in Italy and its subsequent involvement in a destructive car crash.



Brief Analysis
The photographs are genuine. Since 2004, Lamborghini has donated several of its super-cars for use by Italian Police. In 2009, one of the vehicles was involved in the accident depicted in the photographs.

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Detailed analysis and references below example.



Last updated: 7th October 2010
First published: 7th October 2010
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer


Example
Subject: Fw: New Italian police car

New Italian police car

A new patrol car in the Italian police force….Just what they need to catch speeding drivers

Lamborghini Police Car 1

Lamborghini Police Car 2

Lamborghini Police Car 3

Lamborghini Police Car 4

Lamborghini Police Car 5

Lamborghini Police Car 6

Lamborghini Police Car 7

Lamborghini Police Car 8

What a car!!

Pity they couldn’t find someone who could drive it...

Lamborghini Police Car 9

Lamborghini Police Car 10

Lamborghini Police Car 11

Lamborghini Police Car 12

Mamma Mia !!



Detailed Analysis
This message, which has circulated widely via email and social networks, features a series of photographs depicting a Lamborghini super-car operated as a patrol vehicle by the Italian Police. The first eight images in the series are promotional photographs issued at the launch of one of the Lamborghini patrol cars. The last four images show the unfortunate demise of one of the Lamborghinis in a later car accident.

The images are genuine. In 2008, Lamborghini donated a Gallardo LP560-4 sports car to the Italian Police. A 2008 Italian Police Press Release discussed the donation of the new Gallardo:
Lamborghini donates the new “Gallardo LP560-4 Polizia” to the Italian State Police: A private ceremony was held today at the Viminale Palace where Automobili Lamborghini S.p.A. donated a police version of the company’s newest super sports car, Gallardo LP560-4 Polizia, to the head of the Italian State Police, Prefect Antonio Manganelli.

The new Gallardo LP560-4 Polizia, which replaces the previous Gallardo in use by the Italian police force since 2004 has a 560 horsepower engine that can reach speeds of up to 203 mph. The car will begin service with the Lazio Highway Police Department in order to continue accident and crime prevention to sustain security on the Italian roads.
The new model replaced an earlier Gallardo that was donated by Lamborghini in 2004. The 2004 model had clocked up over 140,000 kilometres in service to Italian Police. Another Gallardo was also in service as a police vehicle in Bologna, Italy since 2005. The vehicles include high-tech video systems and an array of other police equipment and technology. They are also equipped with specialized refrigeration systems that allow the transportation of donor organs.

However, a little more than a year after the 2008 donation, one of the Lamborghini police vehicles was involved in an accident that caused major damage. A December 2nd 2009 article in Australiain newspaper The Age, reported the circumstances of the accident:
On Monday a bandaged and bruised police driver may have had a tough time explaining how he managed to write off one of the force's prized Lamborghinis when he rammed it so hard into a line of parked cars that one of the stationary vehicles ended up on the police car's roof. According to the police, the crash was caused by the driver of a slow-moving Seat Ibiza who emerged without looking from a service station, clipping the Lamborghini and sending the vehicle swerving into the parked cars.

The front end of the Lamborghini was crushed in the accident, near Cremona, and the driver and a passenger were slightly injured.

The Lamborghini Gallardo, worth $235,000, was one of a pair donated by the manufacturer to the police to do battle on Italy's roads, where 1 million motorists are injured annually and 4731 died last year.
Thus the claims in this message are factual, although the cars are not exactly "new" as suggested. For the record, the drivers were in fact an elite group of police highly trained in the operation of the vehicles. Of course, as this case exemplifies, even a state of the art, high-end vehicle known for it safety features coupled with a highly trained operator are still not enough to eliminate the possibility of accidents.

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Lamborghini Gallardo LP560-4 'Polizia' Police Car
Police crash Lamborghini
Italian Police Crash Lamborghini Gallardo Patrol Car
Lamborghini donates Gallardo LP560-4 to Italian police



Last updated: 7th October 2010
First published: 7th October 2010
Article written by Brett M. Christensen
About Brett Christensen and Hoax-Slayer