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adaws22

Cyclists wearing ex-police high viz (Impersonating an Officer)

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adaws22
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Hi all,

I havn't had much success googling this - My initial search found the inconclusive case of the 'Polite' high viz jackets worn by horseriders with top hits for questions around the subject showing threads on horse forums from 2008!

Anyway with the winter months approaching and less hours of natural I have purchased various high viz apparel off ebay.

The ex police wear piqued my interest - Seems very functional and hardy -

Also I have decided to start recording my cycling owing to close passes and dangerous driving I witness day in day out.

I like the Idea that some of these high viz jackets have clipsafe ports that I can mount a camera on.

Not sure if I can link to the ebay listing directly so I will just describe it - "Hi Viz Tactical Load System Tac Vest Security Dog Handler HV07''' is one I have purchased and another a black jacket with battenburg on the bottom and high-viz.

The ebay listing states that '''All police badges and marking / insignia have been removed and the item has been declared obsolete and surplus to official requirement.''

The Battenburg blue and white chequer is still there though.

The Epaulettes are blank and the slide where the 'Police' Identification is blank - I would like to replace that on the front with a small card with my blood type, emergency contact, organ donor card holder etc

The back large police sign would put anything there - One idea I was given a high viz jacket from an ex lolipop lady years ago that had the (20 Mph)Sign on the back of it and the words 20 is plenty - I did a cycle tour of Indonesia on my gap year and wore that beauty everywhere more for fun then anything else, kept me safe nonetheless.

So in the back insignia where the large police sign I would put something like 'Chilled Cyclist' or 'Relaxed' not in Blue and White like the police sign though.

So what were looking at essentially is a modified ex police high viz jacket or vest, I would possibly have a helmet cam or one on the clipsafe and one on the rear pannier rack.

I'm throwing this out there to more learned folk on the forum, could I be misconstrued as impersonating police for wearing these ex-uniforms sans insignia and identifying marks (except battenburg).

I will add that I am a very cautious and responsible cyclist, and have had 20+ years cycling trouble free, I do witness a lot of ridiculous driving though everyday hence why I have decided to start recording my journeys - I wan't the best in High Viz outfits too and since these are so readily available on Ebay I thought I would get opinions from serving/aspirant police officers.

Many Thanks

 

 

 

 

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Chief Cheetah

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BlueBob

From your description the only thing left of the police add-ons is the blue/white checkers.    AFAIK they are not a restricted item, so can’t see a problem. Let’s be honest, is anyone going to look at a bit of chequer and think “ooh, look, I think that’s a police officer!”   They may  wonder if it’s an off duty officer being a skinflint using their old bit of kit instead of buying a new one!!! Lots of clothing have radio tags, most overalls have name slots etc.  

 

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Beaker

As long as you're not chucking police badges on it I can't see a problem.  Most of the horse riders round me use ex-police hi-vis jackets with alternative badges on the velcro channel. 

It isn't really any different to the Retail Rambos in Sainsburys. 

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Cuddles

As said above really,they're just items with a chequered band on them. I don't know if mounting a camera to the klickfast docks will do much for the video quality as they tend to move around with the most minimal physical exertion.

Out of interest, what's wrong with plain hi-vis?

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Ether

No issue they aren’t making any attempt to appear or act in a police capacity from

the description 

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Beaker
3 hours ago, Cuddles said:

Out of interest, what's wrong with plain hi-vis?

They're cheap.  Feltons was selling the cycle jackets for £10 last time I was in there.  Most of them were brand new too.

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adaws22

Thanks all some solid advice

@Cuddles "Out of interest, what's wrong with plain hi-vis?"

Nothing wrong with plain Hi-Vis at all though not all high viz clothing is the same - I think there are 3 visbility levels -

With the cheapest thin fabric vests the reflective strip will degrade with regular use and cycling in the rain.

The police vests have the highest reflectivity and on some of them the relective strips are protected further behind a plastic coating as well

- I'm trying to bridge the gap between Cycle wear and functional clothing,

I want to be seen by the people that are far off and are speeding, I also want to be seen in all weather and from all directions.

I have snapped up a number of different high viz jackets and vests online,

One is an Arco high viz fleece like you would wear on a building site, it's a high quality gamrment and uses 3M scotchlite for the reflective strips, that would be perfect for a cold day but not a rainy day.

The Dog handler vest looks super practical it is the mesh version without the tactical pockets, I think it would be super bright on the road.

I do a few issues with a lot of the clothing sold for cyclists and motorcyclists - I guess when you are buying a motorcycle jacket you are investing in the body armour element over anything else, I always wore high viz over my motorbike jacket when I used to ride. Seen a lot of vids on youtube of collisions where the driver just didn't see the motorbike, wearing a black motorbike jacket with a few thin strips here and there I wonder if they sometimes have a point.

The cycling and running apparel seems to favour good lucking and light clothing over true relectivity - some of the cycling and running jackets just have very thin relective strips -

So I'm mixing and matching and getting the best reflective wear for the winter months, finding the ex police jackets selling cheap on ebay is great as long as there legal to wear,I'm confident that I would be seen from a distance and would be very practical.

I'll also be wearing cycling gloves with reflective strips for signalling I'm turning etc - and high viz tape on my helmet,pannier etc..

I think it's good to think about these things, when I first started cycling I used to just wear a reflective clip around the ankle which fell off one day when I was cycling, I bought a high viz vest after that and got into the habit of putting it on for each cycle even in daytime going short distances.Now I just want to be as visible as possible as there are more boy racers around then ever it seems.

Thankyou

 

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bigboyblue

and if anyone gives you advice of 'oooooh that's bordering on impersonation' then get them to google david mclean from southamptons case - convicted at mags for having 'dog handler' badges and uniform, promptly aquitted and apologised to in crown court...…..

although he was a walt and years later done for blue lighting his car up....

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adaws22

Thankyou @bigboyblue I really appreciate that.

I had a quandry what to put in the badge sections - There were a lot of badges on sale online -

I was thinking about 'Dog Handler' but thought that was a bit silly as my fido is a Bichon Frise and would not be in my presence whilst cycling -

 

Then I considered 'Traffic Warden' - But I couldn't figure out by googleing if that would be legal, though funny and perhaps a little naughty,

there are cases of people impersonating traffic wardens etc. but not much about wearing uniform or badges.

 

Then I saw 'Drone Handler' and thought that sounded cool, but then thought if It would be unwise to use that signage, anyone wearing a drone handler igh viz or High Viz encapsulated badge is potentially flying a drone!

I ultimately found an ebay seller that prints custom encapsulated badges - I wen't for 'Video & Audio Recording' in the end.

I feel that's an accurate description and fair warning as I have a helmet cam, imuvi HD cam on the steering wheel and and pannier. I thought it was the softest badge I could apply - I was going to go for something like 'Cyclist - please give adequate room' etc but thought that I could kill 2 birds with 1 stone by putting 'Audio  & Video recording' on the badge - It shows without any quibbles that I am recording my cycling.

I take the police jackets off when I'm not cycling; I think if I was walking around the town centre in ex police uniform then that would be non-productive.

I feel better about my cycling now that I have all my cameras and can be clearly seen.

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BlueBob

Your analysis is kinda strange and too intense.  You are concerned other road users won’t see you. That’s fine and appreciated and wearing hiviz or contrasting colours as per HC is good.

then you’re getting rather OTT worrying about putting a label or badge on the hiviz?  Why? You’ve already said your target audience is unlikely to see you r ignore you let alone take the time to read the small print.  IMHO, keep it sensible, keep it visible, don’t reduce all that great hiviz with silly Walt like badges.

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adaws22

Agreed @BlueBob It was only a quandy when I was initially buying the hi viz-jackets and vests - There were a lot of badges online too. .

I decided on just a small 'Audio & Video' sign on the front in the end.

There's a plethora of badges online but I think it would be unwise to wear any of them

- Whilst an Urban cyclist wearing a badge such as 'Mountain Rescue' might seem ironic and like a bit of fun - I don't think it's wise to wear any save for a small one saying that there is recording.

Thanks for everyones input & Stay safe out there on the roads folks.

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