Ask a Trooper: Driving too slow?
Question: Can a person get a ticket for driving too slow?
Answer: Yes. The only type of roadway in Minnesota with an actual posted minimum speed limit that I know of is the freeway (interstate), but there may be others. Obviously, weather conditions can effect that and the actual and potential hazards then existing on the highway state a driver must use due care in operating a vehicle. Therefore, traveling under that limit would be legal and encouraged (snow, ice, fog, etc).
Here is what Minnesota State Statute 169.15 says about impeding traffic: “No person shall drive a motor vehicle at such a slow speed as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic except when reduced speed is necessary for safe operation or in compliance with law or except when the vehicle is temporarily unable to maintain a greater speed due to a combination of the weight of the vehicle and the grade of the highway.”
So, I look at it as how a “normal and reasonable” person would travel on a road. If it’s a clear, sunny day and roads are in good condition, and a motorist is unable to maintain a safe speed, I would have to look into the reason why beyond the violation:
• Impairment (alcohol or drugs, even prescription medications).
• General physical/health problems.
• Diabetic loss of consciousness or seizures.
• Vision problems.
• Lack of physical driving skills.
• Lack of knowledge of traffic laws.
• Mental or emotional problems (including road rage, memory loss, etc.).
If one or more of these examples was a factor, re-examination of a driver may very well be needed.
If you have any questions for future columns concerning motor vehicle traffic in Minnesota, please send your questions to: “ASK A TROOPER” c/o Sgt. Curt S. Mowers, Minnesota State Patrol, 7694 Industrial Park Road, Suite 2 Baxter, MN 56425 or email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org with Ask a Trooper in the subject line. Questions are edited.