What to Do If You Get Pulled Over for Speeding

Getting pulled over for a speeding ticket is never fun, but you have to keep calm and carry on when it does happen. Here's Modern Manners Guy's three tips.

Richie Frieman
6-minute read
Episode #392

As someone with friends and family on the police force. I have the utmost respect for the sacrifice the men and women in blue make. But when I get pulled over for a speeding ticket, I get incredibly nervous. Nervous is an understatement; it’s more like deep panic-inducing sweat, all over a speeding a ticket! Needless to say, on the rare occasions when I do get pulled over, I am all business and no joking around. Yet some people don’t follow that same logic.

Some people rudely take this chance to vent, argue, and even try to juke the system. Oh gosh, when are some unmannerly people going to learn.  So, before you test your luck with an officer of the law, check out my top three quick and dirty for how to react to a speeding ticket:

Tip #1: Watch Your Tone

When someone is pulled over for speeding, their knee jerk reaction is to get pissed off. I understand and I’ve been there. In fact, a few months ago, I received my first speeding ticket in about ten years. A good run I thought … but that didn’t matter to the officer. What made it worse was the fact I had my (then) three-year-old son in the backseat who amidst my panic kept asking, “Daddy, I want a snack … Daddy, can we go already? DADDY, I WANT TO GO!” Oh, kids—how they can make every stressful situation even worse. First, let me say I was guilty. I didn’t intentionally mean to speed but the proof was in the pudding, and I couldn’t escape that fact. However, between the stress of getting a ticket, and frustration of having to make sure my son remained calm through the entire interaction, I was getting pretty perturbed to say the least. As well, the nail in the coffin of my anger was when the cop told me (after looking me up), “You have a really good record… So, I would go to court to argue this and you should be fine.” Then he handed me my ticket. As you would guess, that drove me over the edge as I mentally screamed, “WHY CAN’T I GET A WARNING IF THAT’S THE CASE!?!?!” I said this in my head, mind you and NOT out loud. But not everyone keeps so quiet.

As an adult who has been pulled over before, I know the routine of getting a ticket. You have to take off work to for court, pay for it and court fees, and try to avoid getting knocked on your driving record. All of these things will add up to make your temper boil over when being pulled over from minute one. However, here’s a very important rule: Police Officers have a job to do and they do not care if you’re upset with them. With that, do you honestly think any cop on the entire planet will sway their judgment when you lose it and yell at them? No, they will not. Trust me, shouting at an officer with your rude and snarky “ideas” of how they are wasting your time will not go over well. Sure you’re angry but wait until you drive off to scream your head off. However, while you’re getting your ticket, keep calm. Doing anything other than that, will only make things worse. Suck it up and wear professional clothing when you go to court. Hopefully the judge will hear you out.  

Tip #2: Don’t Lie

Sadly, I have a colleague that uses the death of a family member to get out of speeding tickets. She openly admits that whenever she’s pulled over she tells a story about how she just left the cemetery of her recently deceased grandmother, and during this emotional time, she didn’t realize she was speeding. To follow up her lie, she then goes into a sob story about how close she was with her grandmother who she calls, “Grammy.” But here’s the deal, Mannerly Nation, my friend not only does not have a deceased grandmother (both sets are alive and well in Arizona), she doesn’t even call any of them Grammy. She said that part is just for good measure. Can you believe the audacity? Yet apparently it works. Which doesn’t make it any better but still. Now, it’s one thing to use a tragedy as a ploy to avoid being ticketed but it’s also another thing to grossly distort reality to trick the system. Look, I hate getting pulled over and sure you can “claim” you thought you were driving at the proper speed, but to overtly lie about the death of a family member? That’s just cold.