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Any coppers on here? Is my hi-viz legal?

Discussion in 'Commuting' started by Maz, 11 Sep 2012.

  1. ohnovino

    ohnovino Large Member

    Cyclist in "Polite" vest riding/struggling slowly up a hill, sees a car waiting to pull out. Waves the car out in front of them. Driver pulls straight out without looking and hits another car coming the other way. Driver claims they only acted like that because they thought they were following the orders of a uniformed police officer. Can of worms is opened...

    Slightly OT: My Dad used to drive a white Vauxhall Cavalier, which I guess from a distance looked like a police car. On the motorway, cars in front of us in the fast lane would spot us in their mirrors and immediately move over, drop to 65mph and let us pass ^_^
  2. 4F

    4F Active member of Helmets Are Sh*t Lobby

    I have that now, I drive a white Skoda Octavia estate. Often fun if you put your lights on and drive in the daytime to see so many keep to the speed limit :laugh:
  3. ianrauk

    ianrauk Tattooed Beat Messiah Staff Member

    Barmy in Barming
    HI Viz looks rubbish... there I just said it.
    Publish and be damned as the saying goes.
    LOCO, gaz and Norm like this.
  4. Sore Thumb

    Sore Thumb Veteran

    I once saw a big nasty argument between a man and woman the path I cycle beside. They went into a shopping precinct and I stopped because I thought the woman might get assaulted. Next thing I see is the man running back up the road.

    I went down to the shopping area and found two police officers who seem to have been called to the incident.

    They came over to me and I told them what I had seen.
    One of them said ti me 'oh I thought you were the PSCO'

    I had my altura reflex yellow top on with my white helmet and a ortileb yellow and black rucksack on.
    The thing is even the police thought I was a PSCO, but do PSCOs ride black fixed gear bikes?
  5. Vikeonabike

    Vikeonabike CC Neighbourhood Police Constable

    It says POLITE... Doesn't say POLICE... I wouldn't have any problem with it if I came across someone wearing one. As far as I'm conerned it's legal. That said, it would be down to the officers own interpretation of the law.
  6. CopperCyclist

    CopperCyclist Veteran

    Personally, I wouldn't give two hoots at you wearing it as a high vis looking for more room - I'm not sure you'd get it though!

    I think to summarise what my other colleagues have said, you could be challenged on it, an officer could make an issue of it, but it would be very unlikely to actually go anywhere in court unless you were a) clearly doing something showing you were trying to impersonate an officer or b) after caution said 'I'm trying to deceive people into thinking I'm a police officer'.

    In the real world, if you are just cycling along wearing it I doubt you'd get any problems from the police (now cue the anal officer tomorrow to prove me wrong). In my area I wouldn't be so sure you wouldn't get problems from the local youths though...

    All the above changes if you for any reason tried to impersonate an officer of course, so don't go flagging down any traffic or jumping reds whilst going 'woo woo'!
    AndyPeace, Hawk and Miquel In De Rain like this.
  7. Drago

    Drago Guru

    Yeah, I personally wouldn't give a monkeys, unless some busy body complained about it.
    classic33 likes this.
  8. atbman

    atbman Veteran

    Was conducting a road safety training session for about a dozen PCSOs along with their sergeant, all of whom were wearing hi-viz official PCSO stuff when we were carved up by numpty in an SUV on a narrow council estate road when there was only about 2' more than the width of said SUV available.

    So no, it won't have any effect
  9. Soltydog

    Soltydog Guru

    near Hornsea
    it was the reflective strips that were not upto standard IIRC Some of the cheaper ones from markets for a quid or two had approx 5% of the required reflectiveness (is that a real word?) so if you are riding on a night time, the approved hi viz will make a difference.
  10. ufkacbln

    ufkacbln Guest

    Slightly OT..
    You need to have BS6102/3 lighting on your bike, the backup lights can be whatever you want.
  11. classic33

    classic33 Legendary Member


    Someone has already mentioned the fancy dress side of things & whether that could be construed as impersonating a police officer. I thought that clothing/item had to be bought with the sole intent of impersonating a police officer. Or obtained by illegal means, if official items.
    I have the same type of vest, bought from probably the same source & to date have encountered no problems whilst wearing it. I have even asked the police, prior to using it where I stood & they could find nothing wrong.

    If we are going down that road, how can the choice of mobile phone be construed as impersonating a police officer. This done after helping two BTP Officers floor someone trying to get away. Sorry for asking this Maz, on your thread. Its just that two BTP Officers mistook me for CID, because of what was being worn, clothing wise.
  12. CopperCyclist

    CopperCyclist Veteran

    Forget a sec about what's being worn. When Drago mentioned 'mens rea' it mean what's in the suspects mind. As project Minority Report is still under development, the only way to find out what is in a suspects mind is to question them about it. This could lead to 'official' questioning at a police station.

    What we all agree on though, is that you are very, very unlikely to meet a police officer with a warped enough view on the world to truly believe that mens rea is present and do this!

    I'm not sure what you mean by choice of mobile phone? As for helping the BTP officers, fair play to you. I suspect they mistook you for CID mostly due to the fact that we rarely get assistance from the public in that way, so again, fair play!
    Drago likes this.
  13. Crankarm

    Crankarm Guru

    Nr Cambridge
    Could the POLICE ever be mistaken for being POLITE .................

    The only police hi-viz should attract is the fashion police.
  14. Mugshot

    Mugshot Guru

    Many, many moons ago a couple of my friends and I were enjoying a flagon of finest corner shop cider in the local park, one of our buddies disappeared for about 10 minutes, reappeared then carried on enjoying the refreshments. A couple of minutes after he had got back a squad car pulled up with a couple of officers. Cue some frantic stashing of the booze whilst assuming "butter wouldn't melt" expressions while we prepared to have our collars felt. However the officers proceeded to give my friend a row for impersonating a police officer, threatening to take him down the station, call his parents etc etc. My friend was wearing a fishtail parka (complete with target on the back) dogtooth trousers, and bowling shoes. Don't know to this day what he'd been doing in THAT get up to impersonate a policeman :wacko:
    Either way, I have no idea of the legalities of wearing your jacket, but I for one like it and if it were me I'd continue to wear until told I wasn't allowed to, and then I'd put it on again the next day as the chances of being stopped by the same copper are probably pretty slim :evil:
  15. Cyclopathic

    Cyclopathic Veteran

    Can I be arrested for impersonating a criminal?
    classic33 and gaz like this.