No matter where you’re driving, it can be frustrating when someone speeds up behind you, tailgates your car, and illegally passes you. It can be equally as frustrating when someone on a highway is driving considerably faster than the flow of traffic and decides to weave in and out of traffic to get ahead. But what about when you get stuck behind a driver who is driving much slower than the posted limit? Some may find this surprising, but driving too slowly can be just as dangerous as speeding.
Different Types of Slow Drivers
It’s inevitable that you’ll encounter a slow driver at some point in time. It’s crucial to remain calm and only pass when you’re legally allowed to do so. If you are concerned about the driver’s condition, you can report their driving to the police, who will look into the matter and make sure they are not a danger to themselves or others on the road.
There are certain types of drivers that are more likely to drive under the posted speed limit. Understanding the types of slow drivers can help you determine why someone is driving a certain way.
- Distracted Drivers. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), using a cell phone while driving, the most common distraction, reduces a driver’s focus by 37 percent. When a driver takes their eyes off the road to read or respond to a text, they’re likely to slow down and their ability to process what’s going on around them decreases significantly.
- Seniors. There are a number of biological effects related to the aging process that can result in a senior driving much slower than they should. The most common include worsening vision and arthritis that impacts how much pressure a driver can put on the gas pedal.
- Inexperienced Drivers. While it’s assumed that young drivers are more likely to take risks and speed, that’s not always the case. Drivers with little experience may be uncertain, especially if they’re in unfamiliar surrounding or situations. As a result, they may hesitate to drive faster than they’re comfortable.
- Tourists. At some point, it’s likely that every driver has arrived at a new location that they’re unfamiliar with. Being unfamiliar with traffic patterns or the legal speed limits in an area can cause someone to drive slowly. It’s also possible for tourists to get caught up looking at the sights, instead of driving the posted speed limit.
The Dangers of Driving Too Slow on a Highway
Not obeying the speed limit on a highway can put yourself and others at risk for a crash. This is especially true when drivers are driving slowly in the left lane. As all drivers know, the left lane on a highway is for passing. As such, it’s important to safely enter this lane and leave it as quickly as possible. When slow drivers linger in the left lane, others may be forced to pass them on the right. This can cause confusion and disorganization. This is especially dangerous when large trucks are involved.
When a driver is too slow in the right lane, it’s still a safety hazard. This is because driving slower than the flow of traffic can lead to a significant number of people trying to pass. The more people in the left lane, the faster traffic travels – which can result in accidents.
Slow Driving Violations in Kentucky
Just like if you’re speeding, you can be pulled over and cited for driving too slowly in Kentucky. According to section 189.390 of Kentucky’s vehicle code, drivers cannot operate their vehicles at a speed that impedes or blocks the normal movement of traffic. This is only allowed when reduced speed is necessary, like in the event of inclement weather.
The speed limits in Kentucky are as follows:
- 15 mph: off-street parking facilities
- 25 mph: school zones with yellow lights or as posted, and some areas within city limits as posted
- 35 mph: business and residential districts
- 55 mph: all other highways, including two- and four-lane divided roads
- 65 mph: urban interstates
- 70 mph: interstates and rural freeways
If you’ve been in an accident that was caused by a slow driver, they may automatically assume you were at fault because you were traveling faster. This is not always the case. If the other driver was distracted, intoxicated, or driving irresponsibly, it’s likely they were at fault. To deal with your medical expenses and accident-related losses, filing a personal injury claim can help you seek the compensation you need. Working with a lawyer to do this is often in your best interest, which is why the Law Office of Todd W. Burris is here to help. Contact us today to learn more.