ASK A COP — Can you drive down the road with the door open?

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, October 17, 2023

Micheal asks: As I traveled the other day, I observed a male driving a car with his driver’s door slightly opened. I was out done when I observed this act of negligence while driving. The first thing I said is I have to Ask Officer Antoine to see if this is illegal or not?

Answer: What a shock it must have been seeing a driver of a vehicle moving down the street with an opened door, not knowing if someone was attempting to jump out of the car. There’s really nothing in the Transportation Code of the State of Texas that says a door must be closed while vehicles are being driven. Now, of course, the vehicle doors canNOT be opened to full extension, because it would interfere with the safe movement of other vehicles on the roadway. A slightly opened door on a moving vehicle, as long as the driver and passengers are secured by safety belts, is allowed in the State of Texas.

Officer Rickey Antoine

Kai asks: Is there ever a time when a driver can go over the speed limit without getting a ticket?

Answer: The citation is meant to be a deterrent from future traffic crimes, which in turn will make our motoring community safer. Nobody wants a citation (ticket), so hopefully the concern of being stopped and issued a citation is enough to cause motorists to obey the law while operating a motor vehicle. We have a higher injury and death rate from good citizens involved in motor vehicles crashes than from bad citizens who are muggers, gangsters and murderers. The State of Texas says in the Transportation Code, “an operator may NOT drive at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the circumstances then existing.” There is no magic bullet answer to give you, but times can arise where driving over the posted limit is reasonable and prudent. It will totally depend on the circumstances and the officer you are explaining your reason for exceeding above the posted speed limit. Consider this, you can be stopped and given a citation (ticket) for speeding even if you are going under the posted speed limit, given if your speed is NOT conducive for the weather or road conditions.

Derrick asks: My question is about passengers who put their feet on the dashboard while on the highway. While traveling during our summer trip, I’ve noticed scores of passengers either sitting up or reclined, and their feet are on the dashboard while the car was traveling on highway. I understand there are those seeking comfort while traveling, but I just don’t get it. Is it legal to travel with feet on dashboard in Texas?

Answer: I’ve discovered driving is an act where we MUST have continued education. The “Drive Safe” course has reached more than 25,000 motorists. I’ve seen passengers with their feet on the dashboard, as well. It’s not a safe practice that I’d even dare attempt or allow in my vehicle. But having your feet on the dashboard while on the roadway in Texas is NOT illegal. Remember laws aren’t made until something happens. I don’t know about anyone else but I surely wouldn’t want to be involved in a crash while my feet are on the dashboard.

Join Me, Officer Rickey Antoine and the CREW, Stephen “Buzzard Boots” Mosley, Lelo “mouth of Hwy 69/73” I Washington and Tejas “Lil Man” Morning Star for Ask A Cop live, on KSAP 96.9 FM The Breeze radio station every Tuesday for at least two hours from 1 to 3 p.m. You can also tune in at ksapthebreeze.org. Call in and ask your question live at 409-982-0247. Feel free to email questions to rickey.antoine@portarthurtx.gov, call 409-983-8673 and leave a voicemail question or mail them to: Ofc. Rickey Antoine, 645 4th Street, Port Arthur, Texas, 77640. If you happen to see me in public, you can always feel comfortable to approach and “Ask A Cop!”