Here are some helpful hints from a 50+ year veteran of speeding that might be of help to any of you that aspire to do so.
* If you’re going to speed, take it seriously. Pay attention. Look for spots that are obviously ideal for speed traps. Watch oncoming traffic for obvious police cars.
* Never speed in the left lane. Cops are looking at that lane because that’s where speeders usually inhabit. Stay in the right lane if possible and look hard for someone going faster than you in the left lane, then keep in their radar shadow (right behind them off their right bumper). they will get busted first by instant-on radar from the oncoming lane. Cops say radar is now so sophisticated that they can tell if someone in radar shadow is also speeding. that may be true but it’s a better defense in court than being busted out there all alone.
* Don’t drive a red car.
* Don’t speed more than 15 mph over the speed limit (or alternatively don’t get caught speeding 15 mph over the limit). Anything over that is not speeding anymore, it’s reckless driving and you will spend a lot of time talking to expensive lawyers.
* Get the highest tech radar detector you can find, a battery powered one that can be quickly pulled off and stashed if needed. The Escort Solo cordless is said to be the best:
* If you get nailed by a laser speed detector, just pull over and await your fate. There is no defense pre-or post-bust. Mercifully they are fairly rare. laser radar detectors are a joke. When the red light hits you, you’re instantly busted. Radar jammers don’t work.
If you get pulled over:
* The affect of cops depends heavily on whether they’re Local of State Police. Local cops are variable in their intelligence and demeanor. Most are not very well trained, all things considered. State Cops are VERY well trained and invariably very professional. Treat the officer with the respect he deserves. He is doing his job, and probably doing it well. “Yes sir, you got me fair and square and I have no excuse”. The time to try and weasel out of it is later in front of a judge, not on the spot. The cop has the discretion to warn, rather than cite you. The better you treat him or her, the better chance of a warning.
* Do not insult the cop, especially State Cop, by trying to weasel out of the citation on the spot by claiming you weren’t speeding. They don’t pull you over unless they have you cold. Arguing with a cop, especially a State Cop, will instantly delete any possibility of a warning rather than a formal citation. Don’t EVER insult the cop by telling him you’re on your way to a hospital emergency.
* If you get a citation, get a lawyer experienced in traffic cases and go to court. Will cost you a few bucks but worth it if you can get off or even if you can get plea bargained down to a lesser offence. If the arresting officer unexpectedly doesn’t show up, they case will go away instantly. If they do show up, the officer will present his evidence to the judge and you will present yours. Your evidence is that you are immaculately groomed in a crisp business suit and you are the pillar of medical standards. “Your honor, I couldn’t possibly have been doing 85 in a 50. I am a pillar of medical practice. Do I look like the kind of guy that egregiously disregards the law?”. Many times that will get you off the first time, never the second.
* Do NOT drink and drive. Ever. If you, as a physician, get busted for DUI, your life as you know it is over for a long time, and maybe your career.
The special case of the State of Ohio. Catching speeders in Ohio is an art form. They rake in a LOT of money in fines and catching us is a serious endeavor. The only time I have ever gotten a speeding ticket is in Ohio (years ago in the 55 mph speed limit days). I got stopped a while back on my Triumph on the Interstate. It was my own fault. I was looking for the right route instead of paying attention to potential speed traps. He had me cold on radar. I pulled over, pulled off my helmet, kept my hands where he could see them at all times, pulled out my license and registration. He checked me out on the computer and I came out clean. He asked me where I was going and what I was doing. I said I was confused looking for the right route, and not paying attention to my speed and on a superbike it’s pretty easy to speed inadvertently because it seems like you’re going slower than you really are. He say I was appropriately dressed in road leather and had a helmet. We talked about helmet issues for a while. I got off with a warning and directions to my destination. He was VERY professional in every respect of your encounter. Had I not been wearing a helmet and only a filmy t-shirt and flip-flops, I probably would have been busted.