Siri Can Look Out For You During Traffic Stops
Recording devices have made it possible to more clearly ascertain truth, which can sometimes be a slippery concept when two people have divergent accounts of an incident. It is important to be prepared for any situation that may arise during a traffic stop. Some helpful advice is to stay calm, keep your hands visible, and have your papers and ID easily accessible. Now you can know that Siri’s got your back too.
Robert Peterson is the creative mind behind a Shortcuts add-on called Police, which triggers a recording for police encounters. Simply say, “Hey Siri, I’m getting pulled over,” and the app is activated. Peterson says it "pauses any music that may be playing, turns down your brightness, turns on Do Not Disturb, and sends a message to the contact of your choosing letting them know you’re being pulled over and what your current location is. It then opens your front camera to a video recording so you have a video record of being pulled over. Once you stop the recording it sends a copy of the video to a contact you specify, puts the brightness back up, and turns off Do Not Disturb."
Since many people have their phone dash mounted, this recording may be vital in protecting you during a traffic stop, especially since not all police officers are equipped with body cams. It is also helpful that Peterson included activating the Do Not Disturb, so no calls or alerts will come through to startle the officer.
Peterson says, “When dealing with being pulled over and interacting with law enforcement, you want as little distraction as possible, and that includes music, bright screens and notifications coming in. You want to be focused on the encounter at hand and don’t want any unnecessary distraction to yourself or to law enforcement personnel.”
Ideally, we would never have to use these apps. Peterson says, "My only goal with the Police shortcut is trying to help people stay safe...and honest; 99.999 percent of the time you’ll never need it, but if you end up in a situation where it ended up being a good idea, you’ll be thankful you did."
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Reality Changing Observations:
Q1. How have your interactions been with police during traffic stops?
Q2. What other ways can you stay safe during traffic stops?
Q3. What would be some benefits if all law enforcement officers were equipped with body cams?