What to do when pulled over

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If you notice that a police car is following you with the lights flashing, pull over to the side of the road safely and quickly. Wait inside your car for the officer to approach, and be prepared to:

Turn on the light

Turn on your interior light at night and keep your hands where the officer can see them, preferably on the steering wheel.

Keep your hands visible

Don’t reach under your seat or into your glove box. This may cause the officer to think you’re reaching for a weapon or hiding something.

Provide necessary documentation

Give your license and proof of insurance to the officer if asked. If the officer asks you to step out of your car, do so without sudden or threatening movements.

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Be polite

Stay calm − don’t become argumentative, disorderly or abusive − and never attempt to bribe the officer.

If a citation is issued, present your story in traffic court if you feel you’ve been unfairly treated. You may be represented by a lawyer and, if necessary, you’ll be heard by a judge or magistrate.

Things to know about speeding & traffic laws

Some roadways are designated as low-speed zones. These include areas with high pedestrian traffic, such as school zones and streets lots of intersections close together. Driving over the speed limit can put you and others at risk of harm.

  1. Never pass a stopped bus displaying a stop sign to its left. That means children are crossing the street.
  2. If you hear a siren coming behind you, pull to the side if you can, stop and wait until the police car or fire truck goes by.
  3. Completely stop at stop signs and look for other drivers and pedestrians before you proceed.
  4. Obey the posted speed limit at all times. Speeding tickets are costly, and penalties for speeding can include fines, court appearances and loss or suspension of your driving privileges. Also, depending on your insurance policy, speeding tickets can raise your rates.
  5. When parking your vehicle, always be mindful of handicapped signs, fire hydrants, bus stop zones, parking restrictions for certain times of day, and parking spots that require permits. Just remember to heed all of the signs. Even if you have to circle the block a couple times, it sure beats getting fined or having your car towed.
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Buying Bargain Trucks

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If you’re buying your spouse a truck for Christmas we’re envious. However, most of the people buying trucks at this time are businesses trying to make a year-end purchase.

A bargain truck is not a bargain if it doesn’t run and is unsuitable for your company. It’s probably not the best idea to look for bargains if you are looking for a fleet of trucks.

accident-2582430_1920If you only use trucks for one-off events, it may be better off if you hire instead of buy, in which case you will tend to pay about 20% of the costs up front and can use money from the business (hopefully) to assist with further payments.

Then again, if you’re the type of business that requires a truck it renting could cut into profits quickly.

If you are only looking for one truck rather than a whole fleet, here are some helpful hints.

  1. Don’t look for a capacity bigger than you can manage. If you are a house clearer and you only deal with small houses, there is no point in getting a large truck. It is better to make one or two trips. Sometimes a SUV or pickup is a better option, it all depends on the amount of funds you have at your disposal.
  2. If you have to borrow money to obtain the truck it is best to attempt to get the best terms. If you feel that the business it is too unstable for you to borrow money it may be better to leave it until there is more cash flow. Still, all businesses need transport, but don’t go bankrupt, it’s not worth the hassle. It’s a big thing, so seek financial advice, including talking to your tax advisor (as the truck is a taxable commodity).
  3. If you can trade in an old vehicle this will help with financing the truck.
  4. A “good deal” or saving money on a truck requires that you find a well-priced vehicle that won’t cost you more in repairs than you save. Use an inspection service to verify your vehicle before service.
  5. As with buying a car, always see the truck before handing over the money, always pay cash and inspect the vehicle in daylight. This is especially important if you are shelling out for a huge item such as truck, rather than a car.
  6. Always ask for a test drive before you buy. It’s vital that the vehicle can negotiate corners correctly, maybe there are warning sounds? Again, it is better to be safe than sorry and use an inspection service.
  7. If you are using a car to visit the truck, buy it and collect it, make sure you have some way of bringing the car home. And you should be qualified and the right age to drive the truck.
  8. It is better to deal with individuals with references who have experience in selling trucks, rather than someone on EBay or Facebook.
  9. PS if your intending to do business using “ice roads,” you will a special license. You’ll want to examine all the paperwork involved in this kind of enterprise, before selecting a vehicle.

 

Safety Season: Features for Parents

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The Holiday Season at The Kicker is Safety Season. Every Monday we’ll post about safety and include helpful information and tips to keep you and you’re family as safe as possible on the roads. If you’d like to find helpful links to all this information and more please check out our Safety Tab on thekickerblog.com (Drive Safe, Buying a Safe Car, After Accident Action Steps).

Your kids represent your most important cargo. Here’s the top tips for finding a car that will help you protect them.

 

If you’re trading in your sports car for a new family car you should look for more than just a trunk that can fit a stroller or a back seat you can get a car seat in and out of. Those things are important considerations too, but lets talk safety features.

We assume modern cars have the latest safety features but not all features top the list for new parents. So here’s the short list.

 

Automatic Emergency Braking System

Featured vehicles: 2019 Ford Fusion and 2019 Subaru Outback

Automatic emergency braking systems, or AEBs, are quickly becoming one of the most sought-after features in new cars. These systems can sense when a forward-facing potential collision is about to occur and take preventative measures to avoid a crash, even if a driver doesn’t have enough time to react on their own. For new parents, this feature can be life-saving.

 

Lane Departure Warning System

Featured vehicles: 2019 Honda Accord and 2019 Toyota RAV4

These systems will alert you when you start drifting from the lane that you are in, without using a turn signal. While the lane departure systems will not take over the car for you to prevent a potential crash, they will give you a warning so you can regain control of your vehicle. This system is invaluable for parents who are traveling with children in the car.

 

Backup Camera

Featured vehicles: 2019 Hyundai Elantra and 2019 Mazda CX-5

Although this feature comes standard on most new cars today, it’s one that cannot be overlooked. Rearview cameras give drivers peace of mind when they are backing up, ensuring them that there is nothing in the way. When you live in a congested neighborhood  or are so tired you forget to check your blind spots, the backup camera can help prevent an accident.