Many times, often due simply to the flow of traffic, a person in New York may drive above the posted speed limit. While they may feel justified in doing so, the fact remains that speeding is against the law in New York and those who violate the speed limit can be ticketed.
Some people may feel it is prudent, then, to drive slower than the speed limit. After all, there should be no problem with that, right? Actually, a person could be issued a speeding ticket in certain circumstances, even if he or she was driving below the posted speed limit.
This is due to the fact that, under Vehicle and Traffic Law section 1180(a), motorists must drive in a manner that is "reasonable and prudent" given the circumstances, and this includes the speed at which they drive. Therefore, if the road conditions are such that a reasonable and prudent motorist would drive slower than the posted speed limit, motorists need to do so.
This often happens during winter, when the streets are slick due to snow or ice. In inclement conditions, if a person is deemed to be driving at a speed that is not reasonable and prudent, even if he or she is still driving below the speed limit, her or she could still be ticketed.
This may seem unfair, and some may even consider that what constitutes "reasonable and prudent" driving given the circumstances is subjective and purely a matter of opinion. Therefore, those who were driving below the speed limit and received a speeding ticket may want to contest the ticket. An attorney may be able to help in such an endeavor.
Source: safeny.ny.gov, "Speeding & Speed Limits," Accessed Oct. 22, 2017