Matthew Skau, Associate Attorney, Yranela & Associates
It’s been a month since Governor Inslee’s Stay at Home order and the roads and highways of Washington are unusually free of traffic. Social distancing has reduced the number of contacts the Washington State Patrol initiates with drivers. It might be tempting to see the open road and lack of police as an invitation to see how fast your car can really go.
If so, you might be surprised to see a State Trooper’s lights flashing behind you. While overall stops are down, the Washington State Patrol is well aware of the impact of the virus on traffic patterns and is keeping a close eye on people who take the open road as an invitation for excessive speed. If you have the misfortune to find yourself in this position, here is some advice.
First, wait until the officer is at your window before reaching for your registration and insurance paperwork. Officers are on alert for weapons if they see you reaching into a glove compartment as they walk up. You don’t want them paying any more attention to you and your behavior than they normally might.
Second, make no admissions. The officer will try to get you to admit that you were speeding with leading questions like “Is there a reason you were going so fast?” or “What’s the hurry?”. Don’t fall into the trap. If you can’t think of a way to respond truthfully that doesn’t implicate you, politely decline to answer the question. Resist the urge to apologize.
Finally, should you receive a ticket, contact an experienced traffic attorney who can help you minimize the impact to your driving record and your insurance rates. Yranela & Associates offers contact-free consultations by phone and email and a fully-online hiring process so you can maintain social distancing while still getting the legal representation you need.
We’ve handled and gotten thousands of tickets dismissed for our clients all across Western Washington. When you get a raw deal, we push back and get fines significantly reduced by using the law to our advantage. Call 425-260-9366 to talk about your ticket and how we can help win your case.