If you drive any kind of vehicle, there’s always a chance that you could get pulled over by a police officer. Even if you’re a safe driver, something could be wrong with your vehicle or you could have a bad driving day that makes a police officer in your area feel the need to pull you over and further assess the situation.
During this time, you might be scared or nervous for a wide variety of reasons. But when you feel agitated like this, it could make for a worse experience for you as you’re being pulled over. So to help ensure that you’re able to get through this experience safely and then get back on the road quickly, here are three tips for staying safe during a traffic stop.
Find The Right Place To Pull Over
The very first thing you need to concern yourself with as part of a traffic stop is safely pulling your vehicle over to the side of the road.
To do this, Alexis Stevens, a contributor to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, recommends that you wait to pull over until you’re in a well-lit and public area. This will help you feel safer since you’ll be better able to see what’s going on with the police officer. Also, to help the officer stay safe, you’ll want to ensure that you’re able to pull over in an area that is well away from traffic, too.
Present Your Paperwork Appropriately
To stay safe during a traffic stop, or in any interaction you have with a police officer, you’ll want to ensure that every action you take is as non-threatening as possible. This includes gathering the paperwork you need to present to the office during a traffic stop.
Generally, an officer will ask for your drivers license, your vehicle registration, and your proof of insurance upon stopping you. It’s usually best to wait to get these items until asked for them. And when you do reach for them, be sure you tell the officer where you’re reaching for and what you’re getting.
Additionally, if you have a concealed carry firearm, Sheriff Jim Wilson, a contributor to NRAFamily.org, advises that you make sure you give this permit to the officer when you hand them the other paperwork, as you don’t want to surprise them with being armed.
Take Your Disagreements Up At A Later Date
Interactions with police officers usually happen because something has gone wrong. And while you might feel that you have been wrongfully pulled over or are being treated unfairly in the situation, in order to best keep yourself safe, John Shallenberger, a contributor to DrivingSkillsForLife.com, recommends that it’s best to comply now and take up your disagreements at a later date and with the help of a lawyer. This will ensure that you’re able to safely get out of a potentially dangerous situation while still protecting your rights.
If you’re scared to get pulled over by the police, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you keep your cool and stay safe.