6 Tricks to Avoiding Speeding Tickets

Know what to do to get out of an expensive ticket.

from Forbidden Advice (Reader's Digest Association Books)
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    1. Understand that your car says a lot about you

    Most officers decide whether you're getting a ticket or a warning before they even approach your vehicle. A good rule of thumb is to keep your car maintained in such a way that you wouldn't be embarrassed to drive it to a job interview. Keep it clean, decluttered, and free of bumper stickers that are anti-police or pro-violence. Forgo aftermarket add-ons like spoilers, tinted windows, and neon undercarriage lights. You want to say "I'm responsible and law-abiding," not "I hate the police, I speed all the time, and I'm trying to hide something from you."

    2. Wave at the hidden police cruiser

    So you were driving down the road a little faster than you should have been, and you spot a police cruiser lurking behind some shrubbery. One former police officer says that the smartest thing that you can do right then is to wave at the officer. Why? He will either think that you know each other and wave back, or will think that you're acknowledging that you were driving too fast, and are letting him know that you're slowing down. Either way, you drastically reduce your chance of getting a ticket.

    3. Never admit that you were speeding

    If you do get pulled over, says one former police officer, never acknowledge that you were, in fact, speeding. You don't want to give the police any ammunition to use against you, should you contest your ticket in traffic court. When the officer tells you that you are speeding, giving a brief, noncommittal response like, "I see" or "I was not aware of my speed" is the way to go. (Asking sarcastic questions like, "What's the problem, Officer?" won't help your case!) Secret sources who have dodged more than one speeding ticket in their lives also advise that you just get through the meeting with the police as quickly and politely as you possibly can. You don't want them to remember anything about you, except that you were nice and did what you were told. Why? Read on.

    4. Plead not guilty, and defer your court date as often as you can

    The more time you put between your speeding encounter and your court date, the better, advise some ticket dodgers we know. Imagine how many people an officer pulls over in a month. How many of them do you think he'll remember two or even six months from now, especially if you take your ticket quietly and move on? The more continuances you can reasonably request, the more time you have to collect your evidence and prepare your defense — and the less specific that officer's recollection of you will be. Getting a continuance also increases the probability that the ticketing officer retires, transfers to another department, or just doesn't show up for your court date. In almost all of these extenuating situations, the case against you will be dropped.

    5. Know the tactics that can get your ticket dismissed

    There are dozens of ways to have your traffic violations reduced or dismissed — opportunities vary from region to region, so check to see if these apply in your state or province. Here is just a sampling: • The issuing officer does not show for your court date. • Two officers were in the patrol car when you received your ticket, and only one shows for the court date. In many jurisdictions, both need to be present to recount their testimony firsthand. • A factual error on the ticket itself (your license plate number, name, date, or other inarguable fact is incorrect) may get you off the hook. • There is no correct speed limit sign posted within a reasonable distance of where you were pulled over (in the U.S. this distance varies by state, but is usually about 1/4 mile).

    6. Secret Weapon: POI Software

    For those who have GPS navigation systems in their cars, here's an added bonus: You can download additional Points-of-Interest (POI) software onto your gizmo that will tell you when you're approaching stoplights that are hooked up to traffic cameras. You'll find links to this software on the GPS manufacturers' home pages.

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    Your Comments

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100400027 Mary Smith

      6 Tricks to Avoiding Speeding Tickets, not one trick was “Don’t Speed”. Hmmm.

      • xMVince

        Most people have good enough reaction speeds & vehicles to handle speeding this day in age. After all, 55mph on 3-lane highways is just way too slow. Why would I want to waste time when I can go a little faster? These tips are very helpful and telling me not to speed is an insult to my motor skills.

    • Milo Minderbinder

      Reader’s Digest, here’s your article:

      How to Avoid Speeding Tickets

      Drive responsibly. Obey the law. Observe the Basic Speed Law. Know the Vehicle Code.
      Do not use your electronic devices behind the wheel. Avoid distracted driving. Do not drive under the influence of any drugs that impair your ability to drive responsibly.

      That’s all drivers need to know.

      Teaching them how to drive irresponsibly and then shirk the penalties or fines is irresponsible. We already have almost 40,000 deaths every year on our roads & highways in the US. Giving drivers methods of avoiding punishment for irresponsible driving is absurd.

      Shame on you!

    • Jake

      #1 tip = don’t speed.

      • xMVince

        Grow some balls.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004560601160 John Mason

      Don’t admit that you were speeding, how stupid is that, I was so dumb and clueless Officer I really didn’t know that I was speeding. I thought the sign said 85 not 55

    • http://www.facebook.com/dean.cook.161 Dean Cook

      I’m all for slowing down, but can’t believe the number of people posting like they have never exceeded the speed limit in their lives. What a crock. There are times when you can be more of a danger driving to slow than driving a little over the speed limit. Spare me the sanctimonious B.S.

      • Milo Minderbinder

        I can appreciate your point. But the behavior one sees on the roads at any given time is proof that people cannot possibly be bothered to drive responsibly. This much change. Fines & penalties for irresponsible driving that endangers others need to be MUCH higher. Driving is a privilege, not a right. Law enforcement needs to revoke FAR more licenses and ENFORCE it more.

        And put down the cell phones, goddamit! The next driver I see texting on the free way may just get followed home and receive a rude surprise!

        • http://www.facebook.com/dean.cook.161 Dean Cook

          Rude and distracted driving is not the subject of this article. In addition I was addressing those people who act like they have never been guilty of speeding.

    • gfsagfa

      Buy a radar detector you silly people.. Take advantage of today’s innovative technology. I have gone upwards of 125 mph on highways, always drive over 85 and have been doing so for years. NOT ONE ticket to my name. Invest in a detector, you will be very satisfied.

      • nunya biz

        you’re a suicidal idiot,try not to take anyone else out with you when you go.

      • Milo Minderbinder

        Yup, you’re an idiot! You aren’t cool, or a good driver, or anything else positive, but an a-hole endangering others. Take it to the track and drive with REAL drivers who know what they’re doing. What, you don’t want to get lapped?

        When you’re on public roads, slow the F down and drive responsibly!

      • xMVince

        I use a radar detector myself (V1) and it saves me every day! It’s funny how some of these commenters think we’re suicidal, but in reality I’ve been speeding for over a decade with no accidents. So, what exactly is the reason not to speed if you can do it safely and avoid tickets? Anyone?

    • SteveJ

      Wow!!!, that is what I am saying to myself reading some of the comments. Some peole are really ignorant. This web page is explaining how to avoid paying for”revenue generating” ideas used by some police departments and not how to avoid paying to reckless bahavior. I have no issue with speed limits where they belong, ex populated areas, you should be punished for exceeding there, because it endangers peoples lives. However, on highways, the reasons they exist there is because most of the drivers in US don’t know how to drive, don’t believe me, watch people making a left turn at any intersection and you will know what I mean. The stupid explanation that someone wrote about higher gas usage was probably written by an SUV drivers, whos vehicle never uses less than 20 mpg. Buy a smaller car and inflate your tires and you will get more gas savings. And as far as all those that feel that speeding is bad because you brake tha law… Well I guess you never drove on the left lane for more than 2 miles, yes it is actually ilegal to do that. How about entering the intersection to make a left turn and leaving it when the light is red, yes ilegal as well, so is making a right turn on red, without complete stop, or slowing down and not fully stopping at stop signs. So before you people start bad mouthing those of us that occasionally speed maybe you should look at yourself first and yes eucate yourself, because when I speed at least I know It is breaking the rules.

    • Rhaman

      It is too bad that 99.99% of drivers are not aware that speeding is mostly wasting fuel. Huge amounts of fuel while getting  very little except making each mile more expensive. Drive steady at or below the speed limit is best. From 55 mph to 70 mph wind drag DOUBLES. Popular Mechanics did its own research with accurate instruments using two 2012 vehicles. The cost went 30% to 38% higher. Time per mile in seconds difference is close to the seconds. At 60 MPH you go 5 seconds faster per mile. Same up to 69 MPH. Huge fuel usage for seconds per mile. So each 10 mile segment means 5 to 9 seconds per mile faster or 50 70 seconds faster. Guess what is at the exit? A nice traffic signal, or traffic or stop sign. Not worth the fuel and not worth the citation.

      • Jimmy 44

        Hey…why not just walk…think of all the fuel you could save then…I mean…your time is obviously worth nothing right?…

      • xMVince

        I’m fully aware of how inefficient speeding is, but I still enjoy doing it and it’s definitely worth the extra cost for me. After all, I have a good paying job.

    • Kablamman101

      Or just kill the pig, no one will miss him

      • xMVince

        Easier said than done.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/2HZH75ZOV7Q5F3RQVGT3TTN3C4 Todd

      There should be at least four speed limit signs in every mile?

      This article is not credible.