Dashcam shows ATV crashing into New Haven police cruiser, who was blocking pedestrians from harm

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An ATV driver suffered serious injuries after crashing into a New Haven Police cruiser Sunday, police officials say.
Police said officers were assigned that afternoon to a dirt bike/ATV detail in hopes of addressing ongoing complaints of riders driving recklessly and illegally around the city.

Around 3:40 p.m., officers were dispatched to the area of East Rock Park for reports of a group gathering there and using Farnam Drive to access the park- a road that’s been only open to pedestrian traffic since 2020.

Officers driving up Farnam Drive noticed an ATV driving fast on the same road, in the direction of a significant number of pedestrians.

In response, the officers slowed down and angled their cruiser to protect the families who had just passed, while also providing room to the side of them for the oncoming ATV to pass the cruiser.

However, the ATV driver lost control and struck the front passenger side window of the cruiser.

The driver was transported to a hospital with serious injuries, according to police.

“This is an unfortunate and stark reminder of the extreme dangers of illegal ATV and dirt bike riding on city streets, both for pedestrians and the operators of the vehicles themselves,” Chief Karl Jacobson said in a statement Tuesday.

“While we’re glad the family was protected from harm, what happened to the driver is tragic, and we hope for his complete and speedy recovery and we urge the public not to engage in this type of activity,” Jacobson said.

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