Reasons for speeding: the policemen do not believe it
Maybe I’ve grown tired after working in the traffic law field for so long, but I’m not surprised how easy it is to get a speeding ticket. However, that doesn’t seem to be the case for many of my clients because almost every client I talk to about a speeding ticket seems surprised. Consequently, I often hear exclamations like, “But I was just keeping up with traffic” or “Well, there were other drivers going faster than me.” Rarely does a client show up in my office saying, “Yeah, man. I was flying.”
The problem with these kinds of justifications is that law enforcement agencies simply don’t care. They are there to do a job, and writing speeding tickets is one of the main responsibilities of that job. As such, they listen to all possible excuses, the most frequent being “just keeping up with the traffic” or “I’m late for work”. Consequently, they have become accustomed to what may seem to the driver to be a perfectly reasonable explanation. for exceeding the speed limit This is especially true for drivers who feel that other drivers were traveling much faster than they were.
This is where the inevitable question of “Why me?” arises. comes into play, and can be virtually impossible to answer. Perhaps it is because he also committed some other offense that attracted the attention of the police officer, such as driving left of center or weaving in and out of traffic. Sometimes it can be the result of something as seemingly insignificant as the model of car you drive. Sports cars will attract much more attention than a family sedan. After all, isn’t that why you bought a sports car in the first place? Makes a statement, right? Sometimes, though, that statement can be, “The court date is on the back of your citation. Have a nice day,” Officer Friendly says with a twinkle in his eye and a glint reflecting off his shiny plate.
Another reason your sports car, or even a luxury car, may be pulled over by another driver is that it may irritate a police officer to see you driving a vehicle that costs more than your annual salary. Well, when you’re operating him in a way that’s against the law, it gives him a chance to do something about it. Oh what sweet justice this is for a cop who may have a chip on his shoulder.
Even the color of your car could be the cause of being singled out. If you think both you and the car next to you are speeding, the other driver is driving a beige minivan and you’re in a fancy bright yellow vehicle, guess what? You wanted a shiny, shiny car because it’s eye-catching and now you have it. I don’t want to sound sarcastic, but it’s human nature to be attracted to shiny, shiny objects, and yes, cops are human too.
Whatever reason you’re being singled out for, rest assured you’re not part of an exclusive group. According to a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 41,000,000 drivers receive traffic tickets annually. This figure represents nearly 21 percent of all licensed drivers in the US, with more than 112,000 people receiving speeding tickets every day with the average cost of a speeding ticket being $152. Have you heard the cha-ching yet?
A $6.2 billion a year industry is a huge incentive for law enforcement agencies across the country to spend a little money hiring more officers and investing in speed detection devices and practices like air patrols, and so on. It’s also quite a motivating factor for some cities to become notorious speed traps. Being in Florida, most of us have heard that Waldo is a speed trap, earning more than 68 percent of the city’s revenue from speeding tickets, but that’s not something unique to Florida. The section of Highway 19 that runs through Summersville, West Virginia, is also a well-known speed trap, with many who have received tickets refuting the speeding charges. There are also about a dozen smaller towns in the St. Louis area that have reputations for being speed trap havens, so much so that the state of Missouri had to step in.
With the exception of cities like Summersville, where the validity of many speeding tickets are contested by those who received them, there are certain steps that can be taken to minimize the risk of getting a speeding ticket, aside from the obvious practice Never exceed the speed limit. These methods are as follows:
• Do not stand out from the rest. As I mentioned earlier, avoid flashy vehicles, whether they are brightly colored cars, sports cars, or luxury cars. Sometimes the desire for positive attention can bring with it negative consequences.
• If you’re going to exceed the speed limit, the last thing you want to do is be the lead car, no matter how fast other drivers are going. I can assure you that if there is a cop trying to catch a speeding driver, the first vehicle they will notice will be the one in front of them. This is another example of how standing out from other vehicles can have negative effects.
• Avoid aggressive driving behavior. Frequent lane changes, trying to pass other drivers, rapid acceleration followed by frequent braking, etc. are strong indicators to a police officer that you are impatient and likely to pose a risk to other drivers. This is the case even if you aren’t accelerating, but they would also indicate that once you free yourself from being surrounded by other drivers, you can be a bit heavy on the throttle.
• You may also want to avoid staying in the fast lane, especially if you are holding up traffic. This is sure to catch the eye of any police officer looking for speeding drivers, especially if you happen to be one of the drivers you are impeding.
• Always be aware of the cars in front of you. If they start to slow down noticeably or stop suddenly, chances are they’ve seen a police officer sitting at a speed check. Let it be one of them and not you who is persecuted.
• Buy a radar detector. They are not illegal in the state of Florida and the higher end models can be extremely effective and, if you have a lead foot, may well be worth the cost.
• Probably one of the easiest ways to avoid getting a speeding ticket other than never speeding is to scan the road, both in front of you and in your rearview mirror, for police cars. This includes looking for areas that would be the best option for a police officer to set up a speed trap. This includes areas such as breaks in medians, behind bridge abutments, on top of a hill, etc.
Regardless of whether or not you were speeding, if you receive a speeding ticket, call our office at 954-967-9888 for a free consultation. Even those drivers who were “flying” deserve a fair legal defense and after fighting a million traffic tickets, we can often even reduce or dismiss that guy’s ticket.