If you go above the speed limit, you could end up with a police officer pulling you over. Yet, that does not mean you need to follow the speed limit all the time. Often, it is better to travel below the maximum limit on some roads.
The faster you drive, the less time you have to react to an unexpected event and the worse the consequences of a crash. Yet, traveling too far below the limit can also cause problems. One car crawling along can disrupt traffic flow, causing frustration among other drivers and making it more likely someone undertakes a dangerous passing maneuver that ends in a collision.
Slowing down is sometimes necessary for safety when driving
Here are times when lifting your foot off the gas may make sense:
- When road conditions are poor: Take care when driving in the winter. Poor traction increases your crash risk.
- When the weather makes seeing hard: Whether it is low winter sun in your eyes, a heavy rainstorm or thick fog, all of these can affect your ability to see what is going on around you.
- When there are pedestrians about: While there are lower speed limits outside schools, this is not the only place you may encounter many people on foot. Think street parties, people walking to a game or commuters on foot due to public transportation problems.
- When you are tired: Ideally, you do not drive when you are tired, or you stop and take a rest. Yet, if this is not possible, remember that fatigue slows your decision-making ability and reaction time.
If another driver crashes into you, they might claim they were traveling at the speed limit. Yet, that is a maximum limit, and if it was not safe to do so, they need to accept that their refusal to slow down may have led to the collision.