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High Viz Jackets.

Posted by John Rodney - Created: 4 years ago
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10 replies (Showing replies: 1 to 10)

Posted by itinerant child-414831 - 3 years ago

Like the angloinfo users,the gendermes also have good and bad. Most of them are (as we are) very safety concientious,in fact probably moreso as they get to see firsthand the damage done to vehicles and people from accidents that have happened from poor safety measures. Not forgetting the fact that most of them know it is the law!

I agree that the high viz jackets should be used by anyone standing at the side of the road,and think that op has a valid point with that. The uk police are far easier to spot.

I also sit on the other side of the fence and agree that majoritively the gendermes are very visible and make an effort to be seen clearly.

Have a safe day

Jamie xx

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Posted by John Rodney - 3 years ago


I did not say I was the first vehicle.  I did explain there was a good long distance sightline.

You were able to pick up on the fact it was a very busy motorway.  "A" plus for that.

A camper van is a little wider than the average car.

What you were unable to comprehend was my point that the Gendarme vehicle had its offside wheels on the white line and the stupid Gendarme was leanining against it effectively on the motorway.

Even if, as seems to be the case, you deem me to be in the wrong.  It doesn't change the fact the Gendarme was a pin head and stupidly in a dangerouse posision.

Have a nice pendantic day.


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Posted by John Rodney - 3 years ago

It is amazing how much we see and how much we want to see.  How much we know and how much we think we know.

This site has the ability to bring them all out of the closet.

Since I posted this comment and read the range of replies I have made a point of being super vigilant.

Yesterday, Sunday 12th July, on the outskirts of Paimpol, there was a cadre of Gendarmes doing road side checks and to confirm my previouse comments, on, literaly on a roundabout.

I drove slowly, slower than normal because I am now in an attitude of proving a point. 

None of them wore high viz jacket or reflective strips on their uniforms.

Burt, you said all their uniforms are high viz.  From what I have seen I would suggest,,,,not all their uniforms are high viz!! or have reflective strips.  At La Mont St Michel a few days before, a site that has, for some unknown reason, more Gendarmes per Km than you can shake a stick at.  Not one of them had reflective strips or reflective jackets.

May I suggest, for your education, that high viz can be seen in all conditions.  Reflective responds to a direct light source.  As in modern road signs in your headlights but are flat in normal daylight.



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Posted by yorkie2-406437 - 3 years ago

Hi John,

In the 24 years I have been driving here I have driven north to Calais,thence northern uk via London many times,I have family in Belgium and Holland,so have driven there many times,my eldest son lived and worked in Paris for several years,so I drove there often,my youngest son lived and worked in Zurich,Switzerland for 3 years,so I drove there several times,also into Germany and every november I drive 1600 kilometres to the Costa Blanca,Spain,returning end of march,and I have had a fraction of the adventures and incidents you describe in your posts,only last tuesday I drove 100 kilometres up the 164 into 22,returning last night between 8 and 9 o'clock,with not a sign or sound of a gendarme,high viz jacket,blue uniform and not a glimmer of a silver stripe,a very boring journey,perhaps I was not looking hard enough.

Just out of curiosity John,if the gendarme had not been camourflaged and was out in the open,do you think you would have "had 'im",I think they are "in season",or am I getting confused with the fishing season,however,good hunting in future John

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Posted by Burt Lancaster - 4 years ago

Should read John Rodney.

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Posted by Burt Lancaster - 4 years ago

Dear John Rooney, All gendarmerie uniforms carry hi viz strips, not only on top but also around the ankles. The yellow is not the hi viz part, the silver strip is. They also have it as i do on my crash helmet.  Sorry but could the reason for you nearly knocking down the Gendarmes be down to some thing else?

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Posted by Reveuse-918439 - 4 years ago

I'm trying to picture this scenario.

You say it's a very busy motorway, traffic in all lanes.

You've seen the flashing light from way back, so Plod has been there for a while.

And yet, you are apparently the first vehicle to get so close as to cause him to panic and wave you over.

Were there no other vehicles in the right hand lane? Could it be that they'd also seen the flashing light, thought 'hazard', and had the foresight to move over to the next lane in good time? 

The uniform is here http://www.gendarmerie.interieur.gouv.fr/Notre-Institution/Nos-moyens/Nos-equipements/Tenue-de-service-courant and as you'll see, the jackets do have a reflective strip running across them.

I see your point and I have no doubt it's well meant, but I think you're wasting your energy because gendarmes have been wearing the same uniform and behaving in the same way since long before you moved to France, and I'm sure it would not have gone unnoticed if they'd been getting knocked over like ninepins for all those years. I guess French motorists are more tuned in to know what to look out for. And realistically the Ministry for the Interior unlikely to rethink gendarmes' uniform overnight because Johnny Foreigner comes along and says You should wear high vis like the English coppers do, I keep nearly knocking your chaps over.

Gendarmes probably think the UK police are wimps because they're not part of the military and don't carry guns.



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Posted by John Rodney - 4 years ago

I am amazed at the response.

But, I cannot understand why georgev couldn't see the point.

With regard to all their uniforms being high viz, Burt Lancaster, that is not correct.  Only today I saw a Gendarme stop on the hard shoulder of a dual carriage way that is sub divided, due to road works, on the 164 at Loudeac.  Without any form of high viz, yellow or otherwise.  You also didn't get my "issue" maybe if you read the post again you would see my point.

Did I run over a Gendarme? very nearly, Buster.  Last year, in my campervan, in the Bordeaux region on a very, very busy motorway.  Due to the contours of the road I was able to see a blue flashing light about a Km in front of me.  Even a Brit can figure out either Gendarmes or Ambulance.  It turned out to be Gendarmes.  As I got nearer I could see the dark blue car with flashing light, you can assume at this point I am travelling at a reasonable speed, and to my surprise it was parked on the hard shoulder with it's left wheels on the white line.  It was closer still when I saw the idiot Gendarme, arms folded across his chest leaning against the dark blue car and dressed in a dark blue uniform and effectively camouflaged against the vehicle and over the white line.  I then saw the look of horror on his face when he saw the potential danger and started to wave his arms in a gesture of move over.  Moving over was not an option, this was one very busy motorway and my instant decision was,,,, one dead idiot Gendarme or lots of innocent civilians.  The civilians won, the Gendarme got lucky.  I recorded the incident at the first opportunity and assumed a citation would be in the post in the not too distant future.

Any advice. Yes. To responders, read the postings twice before you reply.

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Posted by Burt Lancaster - 4 years ago

Do people really think the Hi Viz is in the yellow?   Do they not realise it's the silver strips as can be seen on Les Flics uniform.


Baguette, Garlic, Brioche and Gallette all placed in the correct places.

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Posted by Fitter - 4 years ago

"Common sense tells me the law has to apply to them as well as us"

Sorry - this is France, common sense doesn't apply here, les flics do just as they like and have their own version of whatever law they think you have just contravened.

Cest la Vie.