To Keep from Getting a Ticket, Avoid These 10 Driving Mistakes


There are the obvious ways to catch the attention of police officers on the road – speeding, driving recklessly, having expired tags or broken lights – but did you know there are other driving behaviors that can shine a spotlight on your car, as far as cops are concerned?

There totally are, so if you’re looking to keep your driving record clean and your bank account fuller, you might want to think about following these 10 rules of the road.

10. Turning right on red.


Don’t assume that it’s always a legal maneuver because in some states it definitely isn’t.

“In some areas, such as New York, Virginia, North Carolina, Nebraska, Minnesota, and California, a traffic light might also feature a red right arrow,” points out one attorney.

9. Driving in the lefthand lane.

We all know (or we should) that the far left lane is meant to be a space for passing, not driving, but in many states it’s actually illegal to drive in the left lane when you’re not actively passing another car.

“Most drivers know that going above the posted speed limit is against the law, but not all drivers realize they can be ticketed even when driving at the posted speed limit – that is, if you’re in the left lane,” explains Jake McKenzie of Auto Accessories Garage.

If you live in Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and West Virginia, you especially want to take note.

8. Not yielding properly.


Some states, like Arizona, have specific rules when it comes to yielding – and because over 7400 crashes in 2017 were due to improper execution, they have good reason to enforce them, says attorney Chris Goodnow.

“Oftentimes, drivers have different levels of comfort for the flow of traffic they feel safe merging into.”

7. Cutting through the corner gas station.

It might be a clever time saver, but it’s illegal in most states, says traffic defense attorney Matt Pinsker.

“For starters, when persons cut through the gas stations they are often going at high speeds and might hit someone…it defeats the purpose of having a traffic light in that area at all.”

6. Not dimming your brights.


We all know we’re supposed to dim our high beams if another car approaches, but did you know it’s actually illegal to leave them on if you’re within 500 feet of an oncoming vehicle?

Have been pulled over for this, can confirm.

5. Too much noise.

In 43 states, police can pull you over and ticket you for having a car that’s too loud. It’s illegal to have mufflers that make “excessive or unusual noise,” so whether your car is just old or you enjoy annoying everyone around you with a loud vehicle, beware.

Most states and municipalities also have noise ordinances on the books that cover blasting stereo music over a certain decibel, as well, and you can be fined for violating them.

4. Driving a lifted truck or SUV.


Whether you’ve had your truck or SUV lifted because you like the way it looks or you’re keen on off-roading, the trick could make your vehicle suspicious in the eyes of the police.

“Many people in lifted trucks or SUVs may be susceptible to a ticket and not realize a violation,” says Goodnow. “In many states when a truck is lifted, the lights must also be adjusted to point at a downward angle to avoid blinding the driver in front of them.”

Long and short, you’ll probably want to do plenty of research before installing that lift kit.

3. Tinting your windows.

“There are many modifications that may get a motorist pulled over in certain states,” notes personal injury lawyer Chris Goodnow.

This includes having window tint that’s too dark, but since laws vary from state to state, it can be difficult to make sure your shade is legal everywhere.

Best keep it light because better safe than sorry!

2. Taking a joyride.


If your friend has a cool old car that’s not totally road-worthy, it’s a good idea to let it set in the garage until it is – if you’re driving, you’re liable for any issues with the vehicle.

1. Crossing into the shoulder.

Defense attorney Derek Andrews wants to remind everyone that not only are you required to stay in your lane, you’re also required to stay within the confines of the road.

“New York vehicle and traffic laws require that drivers maneuver their vehicles entirely within a single lane…Police officers have been known to pull drivers over when their vehicles, even just a portion like a tire, crosses the fog line.”

The more you know!