What if a Police Officer Stops You in Your Vehicle?

Law enforcement officers make many traffic stops. Usually, they pull a vehicle over when believe an offense has occurred. You may be nervous and resentful, or concerned about a ticket. However, officers are concerned about their safety during these stops, which explains many of their actions. These tips will help officers and drivers stay safe during a traffic stop.

  • When pulled over, drive safely to a place out of traffic. Do not get out of your car unless the officer asks you to step out. You must present your driver’s license, vehicle registration and proof of insurance. Tell the officer where it is before reaching for it.
  • Sit calmly, with your hands visible on the steering wheel. Passengers should sit quietly with their hands visible. Avoid sudden movements or ducking in the seat; these actions can alarm the officer.
  • At night, turn on your dome light. For safety, the officer will want to see inside the car before approaching the driver.
  • If you receive a ticket, it does not help to argue. You have the right to a court date to challenge it.