questionsdo you flash your headlights if there are police…

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Nope. I've heard that people have gotten tickets for doing that (could just be a rumor) but I am almost terrified (not really but I do get pretty nervous) whenever I see a cop so I wouldn't do anything that I think could possibly cause them to pull me over. In fact, if I notice my lights are not on after I see a cop and want to turn them on, I will wait a while just so it doesn't seem like I am flashing my lights. Can you tell I'm paranoid? And for no particular reason. It is a running joke in my family.

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I flash mine although I wait until I'm out of view of the cruiser.

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@mkdr: I can't imagine what they would write that ticket up as. But I agree, I usually wait until I am out of site and then go nuts with my high beams.

We gotta look out for our own. DAMN THE MAN! SAVE THE EMPIRE!

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@mkdr: I don't either and I've heard the same rumor.

The reason I don't flash my lights is because I'm a law abiding citizen and I don't purposely speed. It annoys me when people drive like idiots so I hope they get tickets if they are driving too fast. Why would I warn them if they are about to get what they deserve?

Another way to put this is would you warn a thief not to steal from a particular store because you know there's a cop inside? Not me as I hope those thieves get caught and are prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Now if you were in Waldo Florida they do some unfair practices to catch people speeding so I'm all for warning everyone. AAA even puts up warning signs.

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@coondogg97: I have gotten a ticket for this. The cop pulled me over and very calmly and politely explained that while my heart might be in the right place, I might give a drunk driver head's up to straighten out and make it past him or something.

It was an argument I hadn't thought of, so I apologized and said I wouldn't do that any more, and that he made a good point. Then he gave me a ticket for driving with no lights (it was late at night).

Went to court, got the ticket thrown out, and I flash with impunity now.

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@cengland0: Equating speeding to breaking into someones house is the biggest stretch I have ever seen. The video you have is how every speed trap in america is. The ones in my area use peoples driveways that are obscured in one direction, or they use parking lots that dip down and there is a building to block. The best are on the highway they hide on the other side of bridges because you can't see them until you are up on them.

If you want to stop people from speeding you need to be in sight. If you are hiding then you are in it to make money not keep people safe.

The tickets for flashing lights is a myth and every ticket so far that I've read about has been thrown out.

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@llandar:

I flash with impunity, too!

Wait, what are we talking about?

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@zapp brannigan: I didn't use breaking into a house as an example. I said stealing from a store.

Anyway, Waldo is not just any speed trap. That city makes most of its revenue from the tickets it gets from speeders. Then, when they have someone pulled over, they use the less known Florida pull-over law to get people that are not speeding but do not change lanes when driving by the police officer. This is clearly abuse and is only used to increase revenue for the city.

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@zapp brannigan: If all speed traps were in sight all that would do is create short zones where people would be going the speed limit and everywhere else there would be essentially no limit. I have to agree with cengland0 here, in general speed limits are in place to keep people safe, and I don't want to help someone out who may end up causing an accident later on.

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@llandar: im always a fan of police officers and tuck tail and say im sorry and thank yous when i get pulled over and genuinely mean it, so for a police officer to basically tell you, 'sir, you might have made someone's driving better by warning them, don't you know that's what the city pays ME to do?', tells me that he hadn't yet met his quota for the month.

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@coondogg97: Well, I do flash on Rex Manning Day ;)

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Nope. I only flash if there is a stalled car, an accident, or deer in the road or something. I don't speed (more than 5 MPH over) and you shouldn't either. You're making the road more dangerous for me by speeding, so why would I save you from getting a ticket and hopefully learning a lesson? Obey the law and you won't have anything to worry about.

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No, it's illegal and can get you a ticket.

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I do, sometimes. Depends on the road I'm on.

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I flash away. If you are ever pulled over and questioned about it the answer is as simple as "Oops, tried to hit my spray/wipers and hit the brights instead."

...just make sure you actually do spray your windshield so there's visible proof ;)

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@cengland0: No lie, Waldo is the biggest speed trap. That's how the town makes their budget.

I read some where that people were able to get tickets written for light flashing thrown out as it was a 1st Amendment issue of free speech. Gray area if you ask me.

Also, mile markers 110 through about 127 on the I-10 stretch in Florida is another speed trap with the county mounties generally hidden amongst the trees in the median (right at mile marker 123 especially).

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@llamabox: People who flash should at least turn their lights off and back on. Not flip on the high beams. That's just considered obnoxious.

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@bsmith1: You say you don't speed yet you then say you go up to 5mph over the limit. Going 10 over the limit on a freeway that's listed at 55 but could easily take 65 is trolling for tickets in my eyes. There has been very few accidents that are caused by speeding alone, majority of accidents are caused by people not paying attention and that happens at any speed.

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@zapp brannigan: Although I agree, the argument I would pose is that not paying attention and getting into an accident when traveling at 55 mph is less destructive than someone not paying attention and getting into an accident when traveling at 65 mph.

I was looking to get one of those rear window LED word displays expressly for this purpose (to warn other drivers of highway patrol vehicles) and to supplant the "thank you wave" with me hitting a button and displaying a very visible "Thank You" instead.

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I'm glad this questioned was asked and that there are responses. I've done this since I got my licenses (15 years ago) because that's what my Dad taught me to do.

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@smallbigtall: thank you. I knew I had seen the article around in my wanderings.

I'd be willing to be many accidents are caused by slower moving drivers who inconsiderately poke along in the left hand/passing lanes oblivious to the mounting number of frustrated drivers lining up behind them. I see this all the time, especially in the DC area.
In Florida, we have "Slower Traffic Keep Right" signs. If you're being passed on the right, then you're supposed to move out of the passing lane to allow the smooth flow of faster travelers. Truly, how hard is it to move over to the right to allow others to pass? Let law enforcement do their job if they feel it's necessary. Meanwhile, as a courtesy to others, please move it on over to the right.

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@lavikinga: It's kind of hard if people keep passing you on the right.

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@zapp brannigan: I should say I don't speed to a degree that would get me a ticket. As @curtisuxor pointed out, you said your main reason for speeding 10mph+ is that you aren't paying attention. It's not so much your speed being 5mph more than mine that concerns me, it's your lack of attention while driving. I shouldn't have to flash my lights to remind you that you are operating a heavy, potentially dangerous vehicle at high speeds. (flasha, flasha) "Oh yeah, I'm driving!" says zapp "I better slow down!" I say let you get a ticket and maybe you'll think twice about day-dreaming at the wheel.

Also, flashing your lights is not good for the filaments. (if you don't have LEDs) That's a good way to burn out the lights! :)

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I always flash my lights and will continue to do so. It's not just used to indicate that a speed trap is ahead - it's also used to warn about cars stopped on the shoulder with people present, etc.... If you get pulled over for it you might just tell the officer that you saw them parked on the side of the road and were trying to help protect them.

It's not the rate of speed that kills - it's the crappy and careless drivers. If I'm driving 15 mph over the limit I'm ten times more attentive, and ten times the driver, than the idiots that are driving within the speed limit but using their knees to steer while they text. If it's just speed that kills, every Nascar driver would already be dead.

If cops actually cared about safety on the roads more than income to the city they would write speeding tickets in residential neighborhood where kids are playing rather than sitting on some deserted stretch of divided road where people speed because there is nothing there.

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Why can't people just obey the laws? Why do they complain when they get tickets for speeding? If you think the limit should be higher (or no limit at all), send your representative or senator an email!

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In New York state troopers started to issue tickets for flashing your lights. Tickets were repeatedly contested contested in court and each ruling stated that it was protected under your First Amendment right to freedom of speech. After loosing so many cases they have now stopped issuing tickets.

In my area due to dividers it is not helpful to do this, however there are a couple of major speed trap highways 30-50 miles away from me that it is still common practice as they hide in the trees under cover and pull over anyone over the speed limit. Since the roads are flat, straight and with wide lanes the average travel speed tends to be 65-70 in a 55 so the cops can basically pull over any and all cars on the road.

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In NY it's called "Failure to dim headlights." It's illegal to not dim high beams within 1000 ft of an oncoming car. I never actually wrote a ticket for it, and didn't get bothered by people who warn motorists where I was. There are too many who just cruise by, oblivious.
It's funny that the same "do-gooders" who warn oncoming motorists about a speed trap, are the same ones who complain about speeders in THEIR neighborhood. Everyone thinks everyone ELSE should get caught.
My favorites are ones who said "If I get one more speeding ticket, I'll lose my license!" Like it's MY fault they were going 57 in a 30, the teacher I caught speeding in a school zone who told me SHE was the one who called in the complaint about speeders. The ones with radar detectors, who never heard of the "hold" switch- I had one at 67 in a 30, when I lit him up, he locked up his brakes, coming to a full stop in traffic, almost causing an accident. I told him he should have saved the money he spent for his fine!

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@jordan711: Then your dad taught you wrong! He SHOULD have taught you to drive safely instead!
Wedit. Cursing and personal attacks removed

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@cengland0: It's a completely voluntary tax- just like the lottery. Don't want to pay it? DON'T SPEED!

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@kcmark: Keep telling yourself this. I'm sure you told the cop who wrote you a ticket that you pay his salary and that drug dealers were getting away while he was wasting his time writing you up!

P.S. EVERYONE thinks they are a better driver than the guy in the other car...

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@wootfast: Quotas are a myth. We used to say "I don't have a quota, I can write as many as I WANT!"

I never wrote a ticket to anyone for something I did myself- I drive up to 15 over, and never wrote a ticket for less than that. I speed on the highways, and I've never gotten pulled over. Because I won't be the fastest car in a bunch, I slow down over rises and likely spots for a cop to sit, I know what the lights on a Crown Vic, Chevy Impala and Caprice, and Dodge Charger look like in the rear view, and I vary my speed in a zone where they use aircraft. Even with my badge, I wouldn't want to run into some of those southern cops with a chip on their shoulder...

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One more: Shame on you who down vote someone who thinks you should obey the law!

I once ran in to a teen whose mantra was "do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law!" I told him "What I wilt do is kick your *, and then what wilt YOU DO?" * That whole mentality is born by spoiled rotten brats who think the world owes them a living, that they don't have to do anything, and that no one can tell them what to do. Meanwhile the freedom to spout that crap was won by men and women who fought and died to get them those rights that they spit on. You can't have total freedom without infringing on your neighbor's freedom. You want to blast your stereo all night? Then YOU get mad when you neighbor mows his lawn at 7 AM.

Wedit. Cursing and personal attacks removed

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@tcayer: No, but he did teach me how to make turns with my knee(s). Comes in handy when holding a beer...who puts it between their legs?

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I can neither confirm nor deny that I flash my lights. Innocent until proven guilty is my motto.

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No. I only flash lights at someone who is either driving with their brights on, or with no headlights at all in the dark. That's all I was ever taught. When someone flashes their headlights at me, I assume they are trying to tell me one of these same two things. I don't assume they mean there is a speed trap. I'd actually only recently heard of this phenomenon, and I'm in my 30's.

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I never flash to warn of police officers.

I do flash if they have their brights on, forgot to put their headlights on, or recently saw some animals crossing the street/in the street (in case any others are following, or it decides to cross back. Mostly deer in rural areas, that kind of thing.)

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I use the GPS app Waze. You can report police accidents, hazards, etc. via the app. All hands free!

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Add me to those who never flash to warn of 'speed traps'. (I get that their are areas you could legitimately call 'speed traps' but I don't think an officer parked in the median, but out of view, counts as a speed trap. You should always expect that there is at least one officer with radar set up somewhere on your route, especially if you're on an interstate/highway for any length of time.) I'm not going to say I'm a perfect driver. I try to keep my speed no more than 5 mph over on most roads, & 7-9 over on an interstate. I've gotten my share of tickets for speeding, especially when I was younger. I don't get mad at the officer, though (well, except when I was 18; my neighbor was a state cop & he ticketed me twice. But, he also hit my dog & killed him, so I was a bit irrational when it came to him).
I do flash my lights if there are animals in the road, or deer near the side. When someone flashes theirs at me, that's what I assume they're warning me. I also flash to warn of accidents.

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@jordan711: That's where you put it when you pass the cop, so you can wave while still holding the wheel...

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@djp519: In this day and age of daytime running lights, I CAN'T flash my lights at someone who doesn't have theirs on. Flashing the high beams doesn't convey the same message.

I remember reading about a gang initiation in L.A. where they drove around with their lights off and the one who flashed their lights at them was targeted for killing!

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@tcayer: You can flash your lights if you have daytime running, you just turn the lights on and hit the highs it's not hard at all.

Really? That was proved false like 10 years ago.

http://www.snopes.com/crime/gangs/lightsout.asp

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@tcayer: Your "One More" post shows the general cynicism and disdain you have for other people that don't conform to your personal view of right and wrong. You see the world in black and white but there are far more than 50 shades of gray. You intimated in a prior post that you were a cop. If so, what a shame. I work with lots of officers in my profession and it's the few with attitudes like you that give the rest of the faithful civil servants a bad name and erode the rule of law, which ultimately endangers all officers.

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Meh... I drive a lot on NY Route 17 (whihch is becoming I-86) between I-87 and Binghamton. Whenever I mention this to someone new who is familiar with the area, I get a warning to "stay at the speed limit up there and be careful of the speed traps up there."

I set my cruise control for 10 MPH over the speed limit and have never had a problem with the police. The speed limit changes a number of times (55 to 65 to 55 to 45 (construction) to 65, etc.) but the changes are all well marked, at least a 1/4 mile in advance or the change.

While I have gotten speeding tickets (about four in 30 years driving) all have been for me driving without regard to the flow of trafic and the posted limits; in short, I'd say I deserved them. I'm not saying that there are not speed traps (places where the speed limit drops but the sign is covered or road conditions make it hard to slow down suddenly) but I've never been caught in one.