Salespeople drive around a lot. Have you ever seen a speeding cop who is fast approaching you? His siren is wailing, and lights are flashing. Your heart beats faster and faster. Only when you realize that someone else is the target do you thank your lucky stars — and start breathing again. What if you could always avoid getting pulled over? One way to improve your odds of making this happen is to know what driving experts know about avoiding tickets.
You might want to blend in. Ric Newell is a corporate driving safety expert. He’s taught over 1200 driver safety programs and has some ideas on how to avoid tickets when you drive. The best way not to get a ticket is to avoid getting pulled over in the first place. Newell says that the secret is to not get noticed by the officer. He says, “If there’s a cluster of drivers who are all speeding, which one gets caught? It’s the one who is weaving in and out of traffic or in the back trying to get to the front.” Those behaviors catch the officer’s attention. That’s not a good idea. What behaviors catch an officer’s attention? Newell has a list which includes a sudden lane change, not using a signal, driving faster or slower than the traffic flow, or moving around in the lane. Newell says that officers look for behaviors that are dangerous. He says, “The whole theory behind traffic law is to encourage you to behave safely. Officers don’t want you to hurt yourself or someone else.”
Don’t get caught. Newell believes that the officers look for one behavior more than any other behavior. Avoiding it will reduce your chances of getting a ticket. Newell says that driving in the left hand lane makes you a ready target for police. In his years of teaching driver safety Newell found that 60% of the traffic tickets were given to drivers in the left hand lane. Here’s why that lane gets you in trouble. It’s impossible to drive comfortably in the left-hand lane. People will tailgate you if you don’t speed in the left-hand lane. If you try to avoid the tailgating, you have to speed. Newell says when officers see drivers always in the left-hand lane, they believe the drivers are either speeding all the time or they’re going to be obstructing traffic. Newell says, “If that’s your lane of choice, you will get tickets.” He points out that most officers park closest to the left-hand lane waiting for speeders. It’s easiest for them to pull them over without crossing many lanes of traffic. Newell advises to only use the left hand lane to pass. Get in it and then get out of it. Newell recommends driving in the middle lane or travel lane. If the road is four lanes, the two middle lanes are the travel lanes. Avoid the inside lane as well. People entering the freeway will cause you to brake and slow down.
The best solution. There’s another strategy that’s almost guaranteed to prevent you from getting pulled over. Newell says that it may be one of the hardest things to do. He says, “You have to work at leaving on time or early for appointments. The more important the appointment, the more important it is that you leave on time or early.” Newell saw a study that said that 15% of the people in the business community were chronically late. He thinks that business professionals are some of the worst drivers because they’re always in a hurry. Newell says, “Lateness causes anger and aggression. It means you’ll take chances that you wouldn’t normally take.”
Newell is right. If I had known what Newell suggested, I could have avoided the ticket I recently received. I can only hope that it’s not too late for you!