Slow driving is not always safe driving

Friday September 18, 2020

Many motorists treat the speed limit as if it were a suggestion. Of those who do, most zoom down the road as if they were invincible. Yet, the small number who mosey along present a greater danger to other drivers. While speed can kill, motorists traveling below than the speed of traffic are more likely to cause an accident than those exceeding it.

The dangers of slow driving

High speed is often attributed as a leading cause of motor vehicle accidents. Yet, variance in the speeds of vehicles on the road presents a greater danger to most motorists. This difference in speeds is especially problematic when a driver is traveling more than 10 miles per hour below the speed limit. At this pace, the odds of being involved in a collision increase sixfold.

Slow drivers create additional dangers when they are traveling in the left lane. If they are traveling at the same speed as motorists in other lanes, they may back up traffic. And if they are traveling slower than the flow of traffic, other motorists must use the right lanes – meant for cruising drivers – to pass them. If the motorists passing the slow driver are moving faster than other motorists in these lanes, they may need to make sudden maneuvers, which could lead to accidents.

The penalties for slow driving

Connecticut has laws in place penalizing motorists who impede the traffic flow. On state highways, drivers cannot travel below 40 miles per hour, except when conditions require it. The state also enforces a left lane law, which requires drivers to stay in the right lane unless they are overtaking other vehicles. Yet, violation of this law is considered an infraction. This penalty comes with a fine of no more than $90, which may do little to encourage slow motorists to move over.

When encountering slow drivers, motorists must take precautions when following and passing them. If they can move around them in a safe yet quick manner, they can help keep traffic flowing.

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