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Is "driving the speed of traffic" a defense to speeding?

Controlled highways throughout New York have posted speed limits that reach up to 65 miles per hour. However, anyone who has spent time on the highways of the state will know that traffic is often moving well in excess of that established ceiling. Some people believe that it is far safer to speed to keep up with other vehicles when in traffic than it is to drive the speed limit or lower and be the slowest vehicle on the road.

Whatever truth there may or may not be to this belief, it will likely not do a driver any good as a defense if they offer it as an explanation to why they were caught and ticketed for speeding. Guidance offered by the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee clearly states that a speed limit is just that - the top end of the safe speeds a driver should reach on a certain road. Just because others are electing to violate the speed limit a driver will not be justified in doing so.

The Committee suggests that drivers caught in speeding traffic stay as far right as possible. It also notes that, for some areas of the state's highways, drivers must operate at least 40 miles per hour to prevent incidents on high speed roads. This information is offered for review and should not be read as legal advice.

A driver caught in fast traffic who receives a ticket should discuss their possible defenses with their traffic and speeding ticket attorney. An attorney can provide them with information and guidance that is relevant to their individual legal case.

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