Itâ€™s normal to get a little flustered when you see flashing blue lights in your rearview mirror. Whether you know you committed a traffic violation or have no clue why youâ€™re being stopped, how you handle the situation makes all the difference. The most important thing is to stay calm. Weâ€™ve compiled the following tips that will help you make the best of a bad situation.
Pull over as soon as you see the police lights or hear the siren. However, do so in a way that ensures your safety and the safety of other drivers. Always pull off to the right side the road even if you are on a one-way road. If a parking lot, side road or business is nearby, pull off into that area to get off of the main road. If changing lanes is required to do this, use your turn signal to indicate your intent. When you stop on the shoulder, pull off far enough so that the police officer can stand safely next to your driverâ€™s window without being too close to the flow of traffic.
Itâ€™s natural to be concerned about your safety, especially when pulled over late at night or in secluded locations. If anything raises your suspicions, such as an unmarked car, ask for the officerâ€™s credentials.
Inside the Vehicle
While inside the vehicle, avoid any movements or actions that could place the police officer on alert. Keep in mind that they have no idea what type of person they are encountering and are already on their guard. Start by rolling the window all the way down and placing your hands on the steering wheel in plain sight. Avoid opening the glove compartment or rummaging around the vehicle, which may appear as if you are reaching for a gun. Never get out of the vehicle unless the officer asks you to do so. If the officer does request that you get out, itâ€™s probably because he doesn’t feel safe standing near the road, not because you have done anything wrong.
Watch Your Words
When speaking to the officer, be polite even if you donâ€™t believe that you did anything wrong. When the officer asks for your license, insurance or registration information, provide them politely. Never demand to know why he needs them or why you were pulled over. Additionally, keep your answers short and sweet, but always truthful. If he asks whether you know why he pulled you over, state â€œnoâ€ rather than speculating.
The information in this article was obtained from various sources. This content is offered for educational purposes only and does not represent contractual agreements, nor is it intended to replace manuals or instructions provided by the manufacturer or the advice of a qualified professional. The definitions, terms and coverage in a given policy may be different than those suggested here and such policy will be governed by the language contained therein. No warranty or appropriateness for a specific purpose is expressed or implied.