Only 11 states in the U.S. have laws regarding speed traps. Although these operations are usually set up to provoke safer driving in areas that are prone to speeding, they aren’t always a good thing.
If you’re a driver who’s been caught speeding as a result of a speed trap setup, you may be angered and upset that you were set up like that. The easiest and most obvious way to avoid being the victim of a speed trap would be to simply drive the speed limit. However, there are some areas across the nation where the speed limit is grossly under-posted, and you may not be aware of how fast you are supposed to be going. Additionally, most speed limits are prevailingly ignored, and traffic moves at its desired flow, regardless of posted limits. Thus, if you are in an unknown city or area, you might be caught in a speed trap due to being under-informed or unaware of your surroundings. Still, not an excuse, but it happens.
Every state has laws regarding posted speeds, and what speeds should be in different areas. For example, in most cities and downtown areas, the average speed is 25 mph, as it is in most residential neighborhoods (In Texas, it’s 30 mph). However, when you are in a commercial area, depending on the specific location, speed limits will usually be set at 35-40 mph. Highway speeds generally range between 55-60 mph for state highways, and 65-75 for interstate highways, again depending on your location. Check your local state laws for more information on speed limits in your state.
If you’re traveling to an unfamiliar place, and want to avoid being the wrongful victim of a speed trap, you should research laws in that area and ensure you are informed as to what speeds are acceptable in which areas. Additionally, you can consult the Speed Trap Exchange, sponsored by the National Motorists Association, for a list of known speed traps across the country, categorized by state: Speed Trap Listings by State. This site not only allows you to view various speed traps as reported by other drivers, but you are also able to report any speed traps that you are aware of, if they aren’t already listed.
Take into consideration that by providing this information, they aren’t promoting unsafe driving and/or speeding. They are simply attempting to provide you with useful information so that you don’t become the victim of a wrongful traffic stop due to speed traps and under-posted speed limits. You should always obey the speed limit and exercise caution and safety when you are driving.
Source: Rob Skubiak
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