How Reckless Driving in Low Speed Limit Zones Become an Aggravating Factor


September 19, 2022

The concept of low speed zones may seem limited to speeding up as cars need to slow down. But in reality, it is much more than that. 

Low speed limit zones have become an aggravating factor for reckless driving and traffic accidents. Lowering the speed limit can be good for drivers and pedestrians — some may still be stubborn and recklessly drive in low speed limit zones.

That is why it is good to know that there are reckless driving lawyers who can help people with reckless driving cases, in this case, those who did it in low speed limit zones. 

Speed Limit Laws in Virginia

The legal speed limit for cars in Virginia is 55 mph for most highways, and for trucks on routes numbered 600 or higher, the speed limit is 45 mph. In residential or business areas, the speed limit is 25 mph, and on unpaved roads, the maximum speed limit is 35 mph.

Reckless Driving Charge

A reckless driving charge in Virginia can seriously impact your life. Most drivers are unaware that a reckless driving ticket is much more severe than a standard traffic citation in Virginia. 

For Reckless Driving by Speed cases, it is not necessary to intend to be driving in excess of the speed limit. Even if done by mistake, if you are going 20 miles over the speed limit or any speed over 85mph, you could be charged with Reckless Driving. If you are guilty of reckless driving in Virginia, the penalties range from fines and a period of license suspension to a possible jail sentence. 

In addition, the situation does not end with the judge’s ruling. A conviction will probably result in a drastic increase in your car insurance premiums and a criminal record that can restrict your ability to obtain employment, a better education, or housing. 

Whatever the charge against you, a reckless driving lawyer Fairfax VA, can begin to build your defense.

Reckless Driving in Low Speed Limit Zones

According to Virginia law, there are different categories of reckless driving. You may find yourself needing the services of a reckless driving lawyer VA if you commit the following offenses: 

  • Driving 20 mph or more above the posted limit
  • Racing with another driver
  • Overtaking or passing an emergency vehicle
  • Passing a school  bus (stopped at the moment)
  • Passing another vehicle on a curve or hill where the driver has an obstructed view
  • Passing another car or truck at a railroad crossing
  • Passing two vehicles except when the road has three or more lanes going the same direction
  • Failing to signal properly before making a turn, slowing down, or stopping
  • Driving a vehicle that has faulty equipment and is not under proper control
  • Reckless driving on the road under construction or in a parking lot
  • An overloaded vehicle that obstructs the driver’s view
  • Driving in a manner that risks the life, limb, or property of another

In Virginia, each violation is a Class 1 misdemeanor, carrying a maximum penalty of 12 months in jail and a fine of $2,500.

How it Becomes an Aggravating Factor

Substantially increased accident risk goes along with reckless driving. Speeding requires a faster response time and will lead to more significant injuries if an accident results. 

Simply, if a speed limit is low, it is for a reason. Thus, having a reckless speed—20+ over or over 85mph—in such a zone is already aggravating. 

Reckless driving will place other drivers on the road at risk. Speed limits keep drivers and passengers safe and keep roads accident-free. They also protect areas of high pedestrian traffic.

Do not let a lapse in judgment or a foolish moment affect your future driving. If you find yourself facing a hefty fine, loss of your driver’s license, or some other consequence related to a reckless driving charge, the reckless driving lawyers at Rudolphi Law can help you. We can help you make intelligent decisions about how to proceed on your behalf.