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What should I know about speeding and speed traps in Washington?

On Behalf of | Nov 14, 2022 | Traffic Violations

Reckless driving and its consequences can be serious in Washington State and throughout the United States. It can lead to accidents with injuries and fatalities. With that, it is no surprise that law enforcement is vigilant about trying to catch people who violate the rules of the road.

One of the primary laws involves speed. There are speed limits across the state depending on the circumstances. People who are caught speeding will be fined based on how far over the speed limit they were said to have been going. Driving 1 to 5 mph over the speed limit in a zone where the speed limit is less than 40 mph will result in a fine of $43. Going 6 to 10 mph will be $48 and so on. Even if a driver gets a speeding ticket, it does not automatically mean they will need to pay. There are ways to combat a traffic violation and it is important to have help.

Key points about speed limits and speed traps

In Washington, the law limits how fast drivers can go. First, drivers must maintain a speed that applies to the conditions when on the highway. In normal circumstances and when there are no special hazards, drivers are limited to: 25 mph on city and town streets; 50 mph on country roads; and 60 mph on highways. Drivers must also slow down for winding roads, on hill crests, curves and if there are special hazards with pedestrians, traffic or inclement weather.

Speed traps are often used by law enforcement to catch drivers who are exceeding the speed limit. The law is specific as to how evidence from speed traps can be used when a person is cited for speeding.

Officers may be stationed on the side of the road with a radar detector to register a driver’s speed. They will be either unseen or difficult to see and drivers may be caught going beyond the speed limit. Evidence of the driver’s speed will be admissible if it is registered by a device that measures the speed as the vehicle passes by, or is a timing device from an aircraft that will register the time it takes for a vehicle to pass by a section of the road.

There are ways to fight a speeding citation

When calling a traffic violation into question and trying to have the citation dismissed, people often make the mistake of not having legal representation or getting the wrong kind of legal representation. These cases can be challenged if there are issues with how the traffic stop was done, if there was a flaw in the equipment that registered the driver’s speed, if the driver has a reasonable justification for exceeding the speed limit or the speed trap violated the regulations associated with them.

Having professional assistance that specializes in these types of cases is imperative. That includes understanding the law and the rules inside and out. It also involves having assistance from those who are familiar with the local courts, know the people who work there and is respected and affable to try and reach a positive outcome for the client.

Those who think traffic violations are not a major problem need to understand that they can be fined, lose their driving privileges, have higher insurance and face other consequences. If there is a viable way to combat the charges and have the traffic offense reduced or dismissed, it is vital to try and do so. Seeking experienced assistance is the first step and can be essential in reaching a good result.