This video shows a rider honking his horn at a driver in front at a roundabout because he was on the phone and not moving. It turns out to be a Denver cop who then unloads abuse on rider Devin Jones and threatens to fine him for road rage.
So who is at fault here? Both!
Yes, police are allowed to use a hand-held phone while driving on special occasions.
In many jurisdictions, police are given certain leeway in breaking some road rules such as using a mobile phone while driving or even speeding, so long as they are “taking reasonable care” or in an emergency situation.
In the case of an emergency, the police vehicle should have the sirens and lights operating at the time if they are fitted to the vehicle.
Colorado law says cell phone use while driving is illegal, although any motorist is allowed to use a cell phone in an emergency.
However, this officer didn’t have his lights or siren on and was simply blocking traffic and causing road rage.
In fact, the video shows a couple of vehicles mount the median strip to pass the stationary motorcycle and police Ford SUV.
Maybe he was ordering a pizza and was so embarrassed he let fly at the rider.
On the other hand, was it road rage or simply courteous honking from the rider?
Well, Devin is certainly in a jolly mood and making a bit of a meal of swerving around the potholes (and even when there aren’t potholes).
The cop actually takes up this complaint with Devin who disputes he was “hot-dogging”.
But the rider was in a bit of a contrary mood.
You can tell from Devin’s comments on the video, his weaving and his revving of the bike just before he pulls up. What was that for?
He gives a polite honk at first, then a prolonged honk to which the office took exception.
The officer wouldn’t have heard Devin say “get off your fucking phone”!
Riders should be aware that, in some countries, it is not only rude to honk but even illegal.
As the officer says, it could be considered road rage and he could have written him an infringement notice.
However, Denver Police later said it is not considered road rage to use your horn in Colorado, but could still be illegal.
The Colorado law states:
The driver of a vehicle, when reasonably necessary to ensure safe operation, shall give an audible warning with his horn, but shall not otherwise use such horn when upon a street or highway.
The lessons here are to be polite, don’t engage in road rage and use the horn as a warning only, not as a weapon.
As we’ve said before, riders usually come off second-best in a road rage duel … especially if you engage with a cop!
In this incidence, the copper lets Devin off after chastising him.
Maybe they’ve both learnt a lesson. We hope so.