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Slow Drivers: The Dangers of Driving Too Slowly

Published: January 2020

Driving below the speed limit may be as dangerous as speeding, according to the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Here are some reasons why driving slowly can be dangerous and how to help keep the flow of traffic moving.

Aerial shot of 6 cars driving down a highway.

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Why Slow Driving Can Be Dangerous

According to the California Department of Motor Vehicles, it's important to slow down when driving during inclement weather, or near railroad tracks, animals, and school buses. But driving slower than the posted speed limit in normal conditions can affect the flow of traffic and endanger others, says the New York State DMV.

Drivers going below the minimum speed can be charged with a moving violation for blocking or impeding traffic. In Nassau County, New York, for example, you could be fined almost $300 for driving too slowly.

And in California, according to the California DMV, a car on a two-lane road with five or more vehicles behind it is required to pull into a designated turnout area to alleviate the jam.

Safely Bypass Slow Drivers

The far left lane on a highway with two lanes or more is for passing, according to the Missouri State Highway Patrol. If you're driving in the left lane and someone behind you wants to pass, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recommends changing lanes to let them pass.

Remain a safe distance behind any vehicles in front of you so that you do not need to slam on the breaks. Keep an eye out for smaller vehicles and motorcycles, and leave plenty of space when passing and merging in front of semi-trucks.

Slow-Driving Violations and Your Car Insurance

Your driving history is a factor in determining what you pay for car insurance. A slow-driving violation may affect your rate, according to the Insurance Information Institute.

Safe driving is always a good defense on the road. Maintain the proper speed, drive safely and be patient with other drivers.

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Our pages are filled with helpful tips and information about the topics that most of us face in our everyday lives. We focus on safety and maintenance issues with regard to your home, auto, apartment, motorcycle, boat, small business, finances and more. Please recognize that a particular tip may not be effective in every circumstance and that taking preventive measures cannot guarantee any outcome. We encourage you to use your own good judgment about what's appropriate for you and your property and always consider safety.
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