Most Common Reasons for Traffic Stops in North Carolina


UPDATED: 10/28/2021

From running a red light to DWI, there were almost a million traffic stops in North Carolina in 2020. That's a lot of drivers being pulled over for a range of reasons. While state reports break down traffic stops by age, the reason for stops, and more, there is no reason to think that certain age groups, etc. are being targeted or that specific age groups, etc. are more inclined to commit traffic offenses. That being said, here are some interesting statistics for traffic stops in 2020.

Who's Getting Pulled Over and Why


North Carolina conducts thousands of checkpoints throughout the state each year and these checkpoints account for about two percent of all traffic stops for 2020. Most of these checkpoint traffic stops involved drivers between 40 and 49 years of age, while drivers over the age of 59 accounted for just over four percent of all checkpoint traffic stops. Regardless of age, most traffic stops at checkpoints involved males almost twice as much as females.


In North Carolina from January 2020 to December 2020, there were over four thousand traffic stops for DWI. Be aware that these statistics are only relevant to traffic stops and don't take into account the numerous drinking and driving accidents, etc. Not surprisingly, the smallest number of drivers pulled over were under 20 years old, and just like with checkpoint traffic stops, the age group stopped for DWI the most was again drivers between 40 and 49 years old. Males were pulled over for DWI about three times as much as females, regardless of age.


You probably already guessed that speeding was the reason most drivers were pulled over in 2020. Speeding stops accounted for almost half of all traffic stops in North Carolina for the year. While speeding in North Carolina is one thing, a speeding and reckless driving charge can be a nightmare. 

If you were pulled over for speeding in North Carolina in 2020, you were likely between the ages of 20 and 24. This age group accounted for almost 20 percent of all speeding stops. On the other hand, if you were under 20, you were about half as likely to get pulled over for speeding as your slightly older counterparts. In contrast to checkpoint and DWI stops, speeding stops involved males just slightly more than females.

Seatbelt and Other Minor Violations

It appears that the public awareness campaigns like "Click it or Ticket” are working. In 2018, there were 60,000 traffic stops for seatbelt violations. In 2020, that number has dropped to just over 41,000, and 20 to 24-year-olds continue to be more likely than any other age group to not buckle up. 40 to 49-year-olds were pulled over more often than any other age group for a stoplight or stop sign violations, and drivers under 20 were pulled over the least. Males were pulled over for these violations nearly three times more than females.

Are YOU More Likely to Get Stopped for Specific Traffic Violations?

Again, the above information is statistics for a given year in a given state and any correlation between age and gender and the likelihood of getting pulled over is beyond the scope of the reports used.

There is, however, a correlation between how you drive and the chances of getting a traffic ticket. If you follow the speed limit, never drive while drinking, and practice other safe driving habits, it's unlikely you'll get pulled over regardless of your age or gender.

If you do get a speeding ticket, DWI, or another traffic ticket, an experienced defense attorney can help you minimize the consequences. From reduced charges to dismissals, having a traffic attorney on your side is your safest bet for the best outcome.  Call The Law Offices of Jason H. Reece in Charlotte at 704-714-8888 or fill out this contact form for a free consultation.