How to Avoid Getting Stopped By Police Over Memorial Weekend
We have a holiday weekend coming up, and so we all know that our friends in law enforcement will be working hard, keeping our roadways safe. And we greatly appreciate that! But there are a few things you might want to remember so that you can avoid yours being one of the cars they pull over.
Check Inspection and Registration
If you wait until Memorial Day to realize that your inspection sticker has expired, then it’s too late. Chances are your mechanic has closed up shop for the day so he can barbecue for the family.
Same goes for the Town Hall and your registration. Take a few minutes today and make sure they’re up to date, so the cops don’t remind you over the holiday weekend.
Is Your Insurance Card Current?
I’ve experienced this first-hand, getting stopped by the police and realizing my insurance card has expired. I mean, I HAD current insurance! But I’d forgotten to switch out the card for a new one.
It’s not a huge deal, as long as you’re covered. You’ll just need to mail in a copy of the card after you get back home, to prove that you do, indeed, have insurance. Still….not worth the hassle. Put that valid card in your vehicle NOW!
Wear Your Seat Belt!
It’s the law in Maine that you wear a seat belt when traveling in a motor vehicle. Local police departments are launching their ‘Click It or Ticket’ campaign, so they will be on the lookout for violators.
I know, I know, it musses your clothes and pulls on your neck. But that’s a minor inconvenience compared to spending your life in a wheelchair after an accident, or worse, having no life left to live. Buckle up!
Stay Focused on the Road
Distracted driving is one of the leading causes of car accidents, so make sure you’re keeping your mind on the road and your hands on the wheel. Again, Police Officers are watching out for distracted drivers, so avoid a confrontation with them, and stay safe by eliminating distractions.
I know when most of us think ‘distracted driving’ the first thing that comes to mind is texting. And yes, cell phones are a big part of the problem. Put the phone down or pull off the road to return that call or text. (did you know it’s illegal to text even when you’re sitting at a light or intersection?)
But there are other possible distractions that are also dangerous while driving. Things like eating. Don’t keep looking down at the fries on your seat, instead of keeping your eyes on the road. Or putting on make-up…shaving….or tending to the child in the backseat. Just don’t do it in a moving vehicle!
It seems obvious to say, but I would be remiss if I didn’t include this on the list. Slow down and don’t speed. Driving too fast is a sure way to get pulled over by the police, and is just plain dangerous.
I know, I know, you’re running late and everyone’s expecting your prize-winning potato salad at the family barbecue! But I’m betting they would rather have you show up alive and well and in time for seconds, than a police officer showing up to say you won’t be able to attend.
Don’t Drive While Impaired
This is a big one. There will be lots of fun over Memorial Weekend, including barbecues, parades, and family gatherings. And, for many, beer, wine, and hard liquor will play a part. So, make sure, if you plan to partake, that you have a sober driver taking you home. That means someone who has not been drinking at all, not the brother-in-law who’s drinking one for every three of yours!
But these days, we can’t just say ‘don’t drink and drive.’ We really have to add, ‘don’t DRUG and drive.’ Any substance that will impair your driving and weaken your reflexes will, at the very least, get you in trouble with the police. At the very most, will kill you and possibly others who are in the car with you or the car you hit.
Just don’t do it.
Obey the Laws, Have Fun, and Thank a Cop!
It can’t be easy being a Police Officer, especially on holiday weekends. Everyone’s having fun, partying, and then putting themselves and others at risk. But there they are, standing post at the parades, directing traffic, responding to accident scenes, and filling out reports. No fun at all for them.
So, obey the laws this weekend and have plenty of good, safe fun! And, if you happen to see an officer at the parade, or wherever, maybe take a minute to shake their hands and thank them for keeping us safe, over the holiday, and everyday. We really do appreciate all that they do!