Most States Let Drivers Exceed Speed Limit
The Associated Press has learned that highway patrol officers in the United States tend to allow drivers a cushion of ten miles per hour over the posted speed limit before issuing a ticket, something that every single American not employed by the AP has known since they were old enough to drive.
Authorities patrolling U.S. highways tend to give motorists a cushion of up to 10 miles per hour above the speed limit before pulling them over, says a survey by a group of state traffic safety officials.
This practice creates an unsafe comfort level at high speeds and is a potential safety hazard, according to the report being released Monday by the Governors Highway Safety Association. The group found that 42 states allow drivers to regularly exceed the speed limit before they are stopped.
“This cushion truly exists across this country and in some cases is more than 10 mph above posted limits,” said Jim Champagne, the association’s chairman. “Law enforcement needs to be given the political will to enforce speed limits and the public must get the message that speeding will not be tolerated,” said Champagne, who also is executive director of the Louisiana Highway Safety Commission.
Of course, it would help if posted speed limits were not so absurdly low in many places. Virtually none of us has any respect for these laws, which even the officers who write tickets to
generate easy revenue enforce them don’t obey. Perhaps if the posted limit had some relation to actual risk, as is the case in Germany for example, people would take them more seriously.