What kind of driving do cops look for before they decide to pull you over for a DUI investigation?

The Police are taught to look for certain driving cues. These driving cues come from research compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. These cues tell officers there is a varying degree of likelihood that your BAC is .08 or above depending which and how many cues the officer observes. The cues are divided into four separate categories:

1) Problems in maintaining proper lane position
2) Speed and braking problems
3) Vigilance problems
4) Judgment problems


Problems in Maintaining Proper Lane Position

  • Weaving
  • Weaving across lane lines
  • Straddling a lane line
  • Drifting
  • Swerving
  • Almost striking a vehicle or other object
  • Turning with a wide radius or drifting during a curve

Speed and Braking Problems

  • Stopping problems (too far, too short, too jerky)
  • Accelerating for no reason
  • Varying speed
  • Slow speed

Vigilance Problems

  • Driving without headlights at night
  • Failure to signal a turn or lane change or signaling inconsistently with actions
  • Driving in opposing lanes or the wrong way on a one-way street
  • Slow response to traffic signals
  • Slow or failure to respond to officer’s signals
  • Stopping in the lane for no apparent reason

Judgment Problems

  • Following too closely
  • Improper or unsafe lane change
  • Illegal or improper turn (too fast, jerky, sharp, etc.)
  • Driving on other than the designated roadway
  • Stopping inappropriately in response to an officer
  • Inappropriate or unusual behavior
  • Appearing to be impaired

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