Traffic Violations - Speeding

Each state has its own laws regarding speeds at which motor vehicles can safely travel. Generally, most states adhere to the following two laws:

Speeding Laws

1. Each state has the right to define maximum speeds for different environments. For example, speeds in school zones are set at 20 M.P.H. whereas maximum speeds for nearby neighborhoods may be set at 35 m.p.h. 

2. All states require drivers to follow speeds posted and drive at speeds that are practical under the circumstances. For example driving on slick roads covered with ice or snow at speeds at or above the posted limit could result in a ticket or worse.

Failure to adhere to these regulations can result in a speeding ticket. Speeding tickets typically result in a fine over $100.00 and in most circumstances an increase in auto insurance.

Methods for Assessing Speed

Let’s discuss two of the most common ways in which you can be caught speeding. The most common being by a stationary radar. In these circumstances an officer uses a hand held radar that automatically determines your speed. Once he or she determines that you are driving at an illegal speed, the officer is considered to be justified to pull you over. The second way in which you can be caught speeding is by a similar method using a radar that, like the stationary radar, automatically determines your speed.  However, these radars are used when officers are driving and are therefore less obvious than those using stationary radars.

There are other methods but they are used less frequently than the radar techniques. There is the process of pacing, where you are followed closely by a law enforcement vehicle and an officer determines your speed based on their speedometer. Another process known as the visual average speed computer and reading, or VASCAR, is used when road markers are readily available. This process requires that the officer use the road markers, a stop watch and simple mathematical calculations to determine your speed.  Finally, the aerial method, uses an aircraft along with the VASCAR method to zero in on vehicles moving at excessive speeds. Once a target has been identified, a ground officer is notified and a ticket may be issued. This is the least common method, and is a rarity now due to the expense of the process.

Interestingly, North Carolina is one of the top five states known for issuing excessive amounts of speeding tickets, so be aware of your speed and your surroundings.  Ensure that you are a safe driver and avoid future tickets by visiting the North Carolina DMV website. Or, visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration website to find additional information on driving and vehicle safety, current research and updates on new laws and regulations.

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