Getting food delivered right to your home or work is a convenience millions of people love.
The national chain “Jimmy John’s” claims they deliver so quickly, they call their service “freaky fast”!
Is that “freaky fast” promise putting other drivers on the road in danger?
News 5 Investigates watched Jimmy John’s drivers run stop signs, speed and park illegally to deliver sandwiches to customers over a five day period.
One Jimmy John’s driver working at the Cheyenne Meadows Road location was not happy when he realized our cameras caught him running a stop sign and then gunning it down a road where the speed limit is 35 mph. He was driving so fast, our cameras lost sight of him and we were forced to circle back to the store parking lot where we waited for the driver to return.
Lead investigative reporter Eric Ross asked the driver, “What is Jimmy John’s driving policy? Do they encourage you to break traffic laws to deliver sandwiches because we watched you roll through this stop sign and then speed down Cheyenne Meadows Road?”
The Jimmy John’s driver replied, “Nice! Is this going to be on the news?”
The driver then proceeded to tell us he couldn’t tell us what Jimmy’s John’s driving policy is even though he’s an employee!
To be fair, he’s not the only Jimmy John’s employee breaking traffic laws.
At the Briargate Jimmy John’s restaurant, we watched the driver of a white Chevrolet Colorado roll through three different stop signs. He also failed to signal at a traffic light before gunning it down Briargate Parkway.
Our news vehicle was traveling at the posted speed limit of 45 mph and we could not keep up with the delivery driver has he passed both an SUV on the left and right of him.
We waited for that driver to return to the parking lot to question him about his “freaky fast” driving.
Ross asked the driver, “Does Jimmy John’s encourage their drivers to speed to deliver sandwiches?”
“No,” the driver said.
Ross then asked, “Do you make a habit of running through stop signs?
“No,” the driver replied. “Not really. I was just in a rush to get deliveries that are late.”
We showed video of how Jimmy John’s delivery employees were driving to MasterDrive Instructor Roger Lohmeyer.
“People tend to lose focus on what’s the objective here,” he said. “Is the objective to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible and win the race, or is the objective to get there alive?”
Lohmeyer’s main concern involved Jimmy John’s drivers tailgating other motorists.
“Not understanding proper following distance is one of the biggest problems out there,” he said.
According to the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office, a driver going 10 mph should be 1 car length behind the person in front of them. At 50 mph, a driver should be 5 car lengths behind.
At Garden of the Gods where the speed limit is 40 mph, News 5 saw a Jimmy John’s driver leaving only about 1 car length between him and the vehicle in front.
Our cameras also captured Jimmy John’s drivers parking in fire lanes, “no parking” zones and spaces reserved for customers trying to get to other businesses like a physical therapy center next door to the Garden of the Gods Jimmy John’s restaurant.
News 5 also witnessed a Jimmy John’s driver ignore a right-turn only sign and shoot across three lanes of traffic to make a U-turn.
After watching numerous drivers speed by us, we brought out a police radar unit and clocked one Jimmy John’s driver going 46 mph in a 30 mph zone.
“Speed limits are put in place for a reason,” El Paso County Sheriff’s Commander Jeff Kramer said. “If I’m just trying to get somewhere that’s not an emergency and I exceed the speed limit or float through a stop sign, I’m not doing my organization any good doing that. I’m actually increasing their (the company’s) liability because I’m increasing my chance of getting into an accident.”
The Jimmy John’s driver in the white Chevy Colorado who rolled through several stop signs before speeding down Briargate did apologize for his driving after we spoke with him.
“I’m sorry for what I did,” he said.
However, the driver we confronted at the Cheyenne Meadows location wanted nothing to do with our cameras!
“Get out of my face dude,” he said.
Ross replied, “If you didn’t run this stop sign and speed, we wouldn’t be talking with you.”
“Go away,” the driver said. “Record all you want but can you go away?”
Ross replied, “If we send this video to the corporate office, what do you think they will say?”
“Go ahead,” he said. “I don’t care what they say to be honest. Good luck!”
Dean Hodges and Dave Deist, the local owners of the five Jimmy John’s locations we visited sent News 5 a joint statement that reads:
“We are disappointed to see a couple of our delivery drivers appear to be missing the standards we expect from our employees. We regularly check Motor Vehicle Reports (MVR) to ensure our drivers do not have a history of infringements and we will be addressing the incidents with those depicted in the video.”
A spokesperson for Jimmy John’s at the corporate office also issued a statement:
“The safety of Jimmy John’s delivery drivers – and all drivers on the road – is Jimmy John’s first and highest priority. Any instances of drivers failing to follow the rules of the road is not consistent with who we are. Jimmy John’s promises fast execution within the four walls of the store, enabling drivers to deliver high quality, fresh sandwiches to our customers safely.”
What to do when you witness aggressive and distracted driving:
If you spot aggressive or distracted drivers who work for a particular company, you’re encouraged to write down their license plate and contact a store manager or corporate office.
If you notice a regular citizen driving erratically, you can also write down their plate number and report it to police.
If you notice dangerous driving habits that are putting other motorists in danger, report it to the Colorado State Patrol by calling *CSP (277).
After three complaints are received against a vehicle, the registered owner is sent a warning letter advising them of the complaints and encouraging them to correct their driving behavior.
Regardless of whether you decide to report drivers to the Colorado State Patrol, police say you should never chase or follow an aggressive or distracted driver.
KOAA News 5 watched Jimmy John’s delivery drivers at the following locations:
1-Cheyenne Meadows Rd.
2-Garden of the Gods
3- N. Academy near Chapel Hills Mall
5- Briargate and Austin Bluffs
News 5 crews were required to follow all traffic laws which is why we attempted to talk to Jimmy John’s drivers after they returned from their deliveries. In almost every case, we lost sight of the driver less than a minute into their delivery run due to excessive speed.