Ticketmasters: Top excuses given to police officers

By Posted : 04/26/2013

Ticketmaster survey: how much tickest raise ratesBut, officer…I didn't see the sign! Chances are all traffic cops have heard that, as it's the top excuse in Insurance.com's new survey of explanations drivers give when stopped by an officer.

Failing to notice a roadside sign isn't the only excuse that revolves around the driver's unfortunate "lack of information." Being lost and being unaware of car equipment failure are also among the most common replies drivers give to police when pulled over for a potential ticket, according to the Insurance.com "Ticketmasters" survey.

Among people who say they have used excuses during a traffic stop, here's how explanations break down:

1.  I couldn't see the sign telling me not to do it: 20. 4 percent

2. I'm lost and unfamiliar with the roads: 15.6 percent

3. I didn't know it was broken: 12.4 percent

4. Everyone else was doing it: 6.4 percent

5. I'm having an emergency situation in my car. (For instance, spilled a hot drink on your lap.):5.4 percent

6. I missed my turn/exit: 4.8 percent

7. I had to go to the bathroom: 4.6 percent

8. I didn't do anything dangerous: 4.2 percent

9. I was on my way to an emergency. (For example, to help someone who is ill or injured.): 4 percent

10.  My GPS said it was the right thing to do. -- 2.2 percent

11. I'm just helping out; I wasn't even supposed to be driving. (For example, your friend is intoxicated.): 2 percent

Men vs. women

When it comes to men rationalizing risky actions behind the wheel, most blame their own altruism – "I'm just helping out. I wasn't even supposed to be driving!" – and GPS devotion – "My GPS said it was the right thing to do." (See chart below.)

Not so for women. Only 10 percent of people who said they were "just helping out" were female, according to survey results, compared to 90 percent for males.

Or consider this: of drivers who said they were following GPS directions when pulled over, 82 percent were men, compared to just 18 percent of women.

The top excuses for women include being lost and having to go to the bathroom. Sixty-five percent of people who used those two excuses were women, compared to 35 percent of men.

Here are the survey results broken down by gender:

Excuse

Of people who have used this excuse, the percentage that are men:

Of people who have used this excuse, the percentage that are women:

I'm just helping out. I wasn't even supposed to be driving.

90

10

My GPS said it was the right thing to do.

82

18

I didn't do anything dangerous.

71

29

I'm having an emergency situation in my car.

67

33

Everyone else was doing it.

56

44

I was on my way to an emergency.

55

45

I missed my turn/exit.

54

46

I didn’t know it was broken.

39

61

I couldn’t see the sign telling me not to do it.

38

62

I'm lost and unfamiliar with the roads.

 

35

65

I had to go to the bathroom.

35

65

Keep on truckin: How much tickets raise car insurance rates

If your excuses don't work and you get a ticket, your car insurance rates are likely to increase. Insurance.com's Uh-Oh! Calculator will tell you the average rate increases for 14 common traffic violations.

Methodology:

Insurance.com commissioned a survey of 500 licensed drivers age 18 and over.  The survey was fielded in February 2013.

Related articles:

Ticket? Uh-Oh! How much common violations raise car insurance rates

Got a ticket? You could be paying for it for years

Insured and confused: Quiz results reveal dismal car insurance knowledge

5 commonly misunderstood car insurance terms

 

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