Common Mistakes Drivers Make When They Are Pulled Over - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Common Mistakes Drivers Make When They Are Pulled Over

TRI-CITIES, Wash. - Police have a warning about what to do when you are pulled over during a traffic stop.  

A number of officers in the Tri-Cities said there are basic things that drivers can do when they are pulled over to increase their chances of having a better outcome after they are stopped.

For many law-abiding citizens being pulled over can be a nerve-racking experience especially if it is the first time.  Police said they usually do not see serious problems during traffic stops, but complain that sometimes there is a lack of judgment that can make a normal traffic stop a lot worse.

West Richland Sergeant Bill Leach said too many people have attitude problems when they are stopped.  He said behaving like that is not going to help the situation.

On Tuesday night a man was stopped for speeding.  Leach said he continued to drive down the road about a quarter of a mile before pulling over to the side.  Then the driver opened the car door to put his cigarette out.  The driver did not receive a ticket, but Leach said he did a number of things wrong.

Leach said, "We have the disadvantage.  We do not know who we are dealing with."

Law enforcement officers throughout the area said the most common problems that they see are people reaching under seats while the officer is approaching the vehicle and not pulling over immediately when the officer's lights go on. 

Some officers complain that drivers do not pull over to the right side of the road when an emergency vehicle is coming up behind them and that many people to do not have the proper paperwork inside their vehicles.