|We all know that the best way to avoid a speeding or traffic ticket is to obey the traffic laws and stay within the speed limit. The list below includes suggestions that could help you even more.
- Be alert and aware, check your rear view mirror and scan the road for police cars often.
- Know the roads, learn the speed limits and the locations of speed traps in your area. Police set traps in highly trafficked where they know they are most likely to catch a speeder and will often “lie in waiting.”
- Don’t get in the habit of passing a police car, even if you are going just a little over the speed limit. Though this seems like common sense, some drivers just don’t get it!
- If you drive a “high profile” vehicle, such as a Chevy Corvette, Ford Mustang or Dodge Viper (aka “high performance sports cars”), know that you will most probably attract attention. Be especially careful as you may be more of a “target.” If your vehicle is brightly colored (red, yellow or bright green) the odds of attracting a policeman’s undesired attention, and thus a ticket, increases.
- If you are in the habit of speeding, invest in a good radar detector. We are not advising that you should speed, but if you MUST, this could be a good precaution.
- Make certain to keep your vehicle in good working condition and that the head lights, turn signal indicators, brake lights and tail lights function properly. If your car stands out due to excess wear and tear, noise, cracked windshield, etc., this is a red flag and may attract unnecessary police attention.
- Keep your proof of insurance and registration with you in your vehicle. Should you wind up getting stopped it is better to be prepared and not receive additional penalties for driving without these.
- CLICK IT OR TICKET! Keep your seat belt fastened at all times while in a vehicle. This couldn’t be simpler and it is the law, so it is reason enough for a policeman to pull you over if he/she sees you are not wearing one!
- Most accidents and tickets happen in the left lane, dubbed the high speed or passing lane. Obey the limits and stay in the right lane to avoid a ticket.
- There is no rule as to how much over the speed limit you can be going before an officer will give you a ticket, contrary to popular belief. Most drivers think that if the speed limit is 55MPH and they are traveling at 60MPH, they are safe. While this could be true, we couldn’t find an officer of the law in any jurisdiction who would confirm this.
What To Do If You’re Stopped By A Police Officer
- SAFELY PULL OVER, AS SOON AS POSSIBLE, and as far to the right as the conditions will allow. Don’t give the officer the impression that you are unaware you are being pulled over or that you might flee the scene.
- SHUT OFF YOUR ENGINE and turn off the stereo. If it is dark outside, turn on your dome light. KEEP YOUR HANDS ON THE WHEEL IN PLAIN SIGHT (the “10 and 2” position). This is a sign of respect and reassures the officer that he or she is at no risk when approaching your car. You can get out your license, registration and proof of insurance if and when the officer requests them.
- Take a deep breath and REMAIN CALM. Now is not the time to lose your temper and say something you will regret later. All passengers in your car should remain quiet unless the officer asks them a specific question.
- DO NOT ADMIT ANYTHING. You can remain respectful to the officer without making a statement that could be used against you in court.
- When the officer asks if you have your license, registration and proof of insurance, ask him or her if you should get them out now. If the officer tells you to produce them and they are in your glove compartment or console, remove them quickly and close the compartment door.
- Remember that this is not your chance to plead your case. The odds that you will talk the officer out of issuing you a ticket once you have been pulled over are extremely slim.
- Observe your surroundings and try to REMEMBER AS MUCH DETAIL AS POSSIBLE. Details such as the surrounding location, weather conditions, traffic conditions, the clothes you are wearing, the license plate and unit number of the officer’s car, what the officer says, etc. can become very important later.
- Once you have been issued a citation (or hopefully just a friendly warning), pull away from the scene calmly and safely. Do not make yourself memorable by hanging around too long or squealing your tires on the way out. You can always come back to the scene later to review the surroundings.