We've all tooted our own horn from time to time, but are there instances in Minnesota where doing that is against the law?

Yesterday afternoon I pulled up to Coborn's on Cooper in St. Cloud just as one of my co-workers was walking along the sidewalk in front of my car. What did I do? I honked my horn to scare the crap out of him of course. Turns out, that may be against the law in Minnesota.

Here's what the State of Minnesota says:

The driver of a motor vehicle shall give an audible warning with the horn only when necessary for safe operation. It is illegal to honk the horn if it is not a safety-related situation.

I know a few people (who will remain anonymous) that use their horn at every chance they get to communicate their displeasure with other drives who appear to be hell-bent on personally targeting the unmentioned with evil driving tactics. Of course, that's probably not the case, but honk 'em if you got 'em, right?

Minnesota Statute 169.68 Horn, Siren

Every motor vehicle when operated upon a highway must be equipped with a horn in good working order and capable of emitting sound audible under normal conditions from a distance of not less than 200 feet. However, the horn or other warning device must not emit an unreasonably loud or harsh sound or a whistle. The driver of a motor vehicle shall, when reasonably necessary to ensure safe operation, give audible warning with the horn, but shall not otherwise use the horn when upon a highway.

Minnesota law enforcement officers probably have better things to do than hand out tickets for horn honking, but now you know -- it could happen. And it sounds like you could be ticketed for not having a horn too.

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