Helpful French Police

Discussion in 'Continental Touring' started by maison, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. maison

    maison Funster

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    Reading the threads about experiences with Police checks etc. I suppose we have been lucky in France. Our only two experiences of French Police were:-

    1
    Approaching a T-junction with a Stop sign I slowed down and changed into second gear on approach. I could see both directions were clear within my sight, (a good half kilometre in each direction), so I continued through the junction, slowly, but I didn't come to a complete halt.

    On joining the main road I travelled to the nearest bend where I was flagged down by the Gendarmerie. A Police car parked behind a bush had seen my illegal manouvre! I said to my wife "There goes the price of our dinner for the next few nights" and pulled over.

    The Policeman informed that he had seen me approach the junction and slow down but not stop. His hand was resting on his gun holster which was a bit intimidating to say the least. I agreed that he was correct and waited for the fine.

    With a smile he said "Monsieur, in my Country Stop means STOP. Do not do it again ! Enjoy your holiday". and waved us back out onto the road. I would have kissed him except I thought that might also be illegal !

    2

    Whilst stationary at a road junction a lorry, which had been parked at the side of the road reversed into our rear pushing us into the junction. Fortunately nothing was coming along the road at the time but our vehicle suffered damage from the shunt.

    The lorry driver didn't know he had hit us and started to drive off. I blew our horn loudly and he stopped. When he got out he started the "Gallic Shrug" gesture as if to say we shouldn't have been at the junction.

    At that point a "Police Municipal" officer arrived on the scene. He had heard the bang of the collision and our horn blast. The Lorry driver tried to say we had reversed into him. Fortunately, the Policeman had already spoken to a couple of bystanders before he approached us and knew the true story.
    He let the lorry driver commit himself and then told told him.

    At that stage he used the lorry driver's mobile phone to contact the lorry owners and told them what had happened. He suggested that they accepted liability for the damage, and paid for it and he would take no further action. They agreed.

    The Policeman then got in our vehicle, guided us to a local garage and explained the situation. Result :- our vehicle was fixed within three days and the lorry drivers firm picked up the bill direct.

    Quel Service !

    :thumb:
     
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  2. spongy

    spongy Read Only Funster

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    We have only had one encounter with the French Police in Sarlat when I drove through a red light because I did'nt see it. I wondered why traffic was driving across in front of me, one of which was a police car. Fortunately he let me off which just a finger wagging. Perhaps it was because we were stupid English!

    spongy
     
  3. FIDGET

    FIDGET Funster

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    Hi, On one of forays into France with another m/homer in convoy, while I was following him we passed 3 gerndarme's on motorbikes while on our way back nearly to Calais only to find they then joined the convoy , after a couple of miles they decided to pull both of us over, when we pulled into the aire/layby we noticed they had pulled several cars & m/h's . they then proceeded to check our paperwork and vehicles no problem quite helpfull, then my beloved wife chirped in "why have you only pulled English vehicles" quite abruptly, I shrunk in my seat thinking I wish she hadn't ,but actually the gendarme was again polite and explained that it was just a coincidence. WHEW!!!
    Sometimes I wish she'd bite or button her lip!!
    :rain:Terry:rain:
     
  4. Larby

    Larby Funster

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    Many years ago on 1st visit to France I was about to join the Peripherique.
    I asked Gendarme on point duty directions, he held up the traffic and helped me reverse to guide me to correct lane:thumb:

    I have watched the Police as I thought, after people speeding towards a junction. They were in fact after those failing to stop. They do seem to take STOP very seriously. They were in the little town and it was amusing to watch the motorist creep slowly, see the Policeman then STOP even though half the car was over!
    My friend warned me that they will have you even if you creep over on a bicycle. Their country, their rules so I abide.
     
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  5. yodeli

    yodeli Funster Life Member

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    Last time I had to deal with the french Police .... they were 180 ... having a huge party at the stadium where I work as a warden...! They were all super duper and soooo [STRIKE]cute[/STRIKE] ...cool :man_in_love::imoutahere:
     
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  6. davejen

    davejen Funster

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    Stop means STOP in THIS country too, do you not abide here?
    Cheers, Dave:thumb:
     
  7. Larby

    Larby Funster

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    Yes of course.
    I didn't say I don't here. :Wink:
    Merely pointing out the importance that the French apply to their STOP requirement.
     
  8. Puddleduck

    Puddleduck Funster

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    We had problems with a flat tyre whilst in Clermont-Ferrand. We were in a car park so not causing traffic problems - or any other problems - honest. :Smile:

    We were just about to phone the rescue service when there was a tap on my OH's shoulder and there was a local policeman. OH doesn't speak much French at all so over to me. I spent 6 months is Paris 40 years ago living with a Spanish family, so speak French with a Spanish accent and swear like a Parisian, but that's a different story :Wink:. To cut a long story short the officer took the details of the tyre and our van and then cycled away after telling us not to worry and to have lunch.

    Half an hour later a truck from the Michelin factory (which is in Clermont-Ferrand) pulled up beside our van, they had the van up, wheel off, tyre replaced and everything put to rights within an amazingly short time. They checked every other tyre including the spare and suggested we change one of the other back tyres which we did. The charge for the two tyres and call out was less than we would have paid for a single tyre at home and they absolutely refused to take "merci beaucoup" money for a drink. There was a proper receipt and they asked for card payment not cash. Lots of handshakes all round and an offer of somewhere to stay overnight if we wished.

    The policeman re-appeared and checked all was well. I took a note of his name, number and station and wrote to his superior officer when we got home. The letter back from the superior officer was along the lines of "all in the line of duty".

    The only place we've ever found officials to be a bit "off" is near Calais and they usually thaw out if you (at least) try to converse in French with them.
     
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  9. Allanm

    Allanm Funster

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    What? Policemen doing what they are paid for? whatever next!

    The only contact we have had with the local police was last year when were in Confolens and trying to find somewhere to park. We stopped at the side of the road next to a restaurant and asked a local where a car park was. At a table outside were 4 motorcycle police, one got up, still eating, came over to us and pointed out a small car park with free parking. We parked and walked back past the restaurant where we were waved at by 4 burly smiling coppers getting onto their motorbikes. I did notice a couple of empty wine bottles on their table.......

    Allan
     
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  10. 163phil

    163phil Read Only Funster

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    We were approaching Villeneuve on our bike (ahem, a little faster than we might have, but slowing down for the upcoming village) when two motorcycle gendarmes simply gestured to us to slow down. We waved as we passed and received a friendly wave in return.

    Now that would never happen in this country - it'd be 3 points and a £60 fine for sure.
     
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