Norfolk Speed Limit Laws

Any number of miles per hour over the speed limit is considered breaking the law. A speed limit is what the state has determined, after a lot of science and engineering studies, is the highest safe speed that any driver should be going on that particular road. If someone is charged for breaking Norfolk speed limit laws they should consult with a Norfolk speeding ticket lawyer.

Absolute, Presumed, or Basic Speed Limits

Virginia, like the majority of the states, has absolute speed limits. There are only a small number of states that follow presumed speed limit laws, and every single state has basic speed limits. An absolute speed limit is easy to understand, it means that it’s unlawful to drive at any speed over the posted speed limit. If the sign says the speed limit is 45 mph, anything above that, even 46 mph—is illegal.

A presumed speed limit is kind of similar, but it has a little more complexity to it. The burden of proof shifts over to the defendant to prove that his speed was safe with the current conditions on the road. With the same example, if the sign says 45 mph, but the defendant was going 46 mph, then he has to prove in court that going 46 mph was still safe for whatever reason—like there was no traffic and it was a clear morning and he was the only driver on the road. This is different from an absolute limit because the burden of proof is on the prosecution’s side.

A basic speed limit is common sense. If you take into account all of the additional conditions that affect what makes a speed limit is safe, then you will have basic speed limits. For example, if the speed limit is 45 mph, but it’s raining, then the driver shouldn’t be going 45 mph anymore because it’s no longer safe to do so. This is commonly brought up in accident cases.

Driving 10 Miles, or 10% Over the Limit

In Virginia, any number of miles per hour over the posted speed limit is illegal. There’s no magical formula that makes it okay. However, sometimes officers won’t pull somebody over if they are not going very much over the speed limit, because it’s simply not worth it.

Norfolk, like Virginia as a whole, has default speed limit laws. If there’s no sign posted that shows what the speed limit is, then it can be assumed that the default limit for business and residential areas is 25 mph. On secondary roads the limits are 45 mph for truck and 55 mph for other vehicles. For unpaved roads, the default is 35 mph.

Speeding on Virginia Highways

Virginia’s highest speed limit for highways is 70 mph. The risk of speeding on the highway is the risk that would naturally come when someone is driving and picks up speed. Someone going too fast on the highway increases the chance that there’s going to be a collision, reaction time is slower when someone is going really fast, and if there is a collision going at highway speeds, the likelihood of there being an injury or death also increases.