this evening I was heading off in the car to collect one of the kids from the cinema and turned on my radio.
I drove along chatting to MM6CTH (Shane) through the GB3NI repeater. in front of me, stopped at a level crossing was a police patrol car. The gates lift and we drive off with me still chatting away to Shane. At the traffic lights 1/2 a mile further on the blue lights go on and the Officer from the passenger side gets out and comes to the drivers door.
ALWAYS be polite with the good folks of the police of course
are you taxiing? he asks..... (no taxi plates so he'd have had me there.....)
"No its Ham radio" says I, "Callsign MI0OIM, and it's legal for me to use it as I'm driving"
"are you sure" he asks, so I explained how the law on phones doesn't apply to microphones so that he could use his radio mounted on his stab vest. Unfortunately, I didn't have the actual letter of the law off pat, but I told him that all was fine and dandy and while if I was driving dangerously as a result, then certainly I was open to prosecution, but not for simply using the mic, as it was fully legit.
I suggested that he take a record of my reg no and if I was wrong to please get in touch, but it IS right, really.
Poor guy was bewildered. obviously there are too many laws for an officer to know them all, and in future I will have a copy of both my licence and the relevant law (below) in the glove box of the car, for back up, but he went off dubious but (for the time being anyway) happy!
The Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) (No.4) Regulations 2003 Statutory Instrument 2003 No 2695