How Are the Speed Limits Created?

Posted on by Defensive Driving Team | in Defensive Driving Tips

You know that speed limit sign that you have to follow religiously unless you want to risk an expensive traffic ticket? What if you found out it was created based around the opinion of one person. Okay, maybe not just one person, but a traffic engineer always gets the final say when a speed limit is being decided.

How exactly does it work?

Most states actually operate with the 85th percentile rule. Traffic studies are done on new roads, evaluating what speeds 85 percent of the people drive at. This rule works because most people will drive at a reasonable speed based on the conditions of that particular road. Yes, you will get your few people that always drive way too fast or way too slow, but most people naturally drive at a good pace. However, that is not the end of the equation.

What else is considered?

As mentioned above, a traffic engineer (or team of engineers) is always responsible for setting the final speed limit. They highly consider the 85th percentile rule, but they will also take into account additional details. Here are a few of the things that are also considered when speed limits are being established:

  • The type of the road. Is the road straight or curved? Is it flat or does it have an incline or decline?
  • Where is the road located? Is it in a residential area? Are there any intersections nearby that may require a sudden stop?
  • What traffic control devices are nearby? Are there stoplights and stop signs that require vehicles to stop on a regular basis?
  • How many accidents have occurred on this road? Could this be a sign slower speed limits might be necessary?
  • How many vehicles use this road on a regular basis?
  • How far ahead can a driver see on a clear day? Will they be able to see far enough to warrant faster speed limits?

After all of the above questions are answered, along with a study of what speed the majority of people currently drive on the road, a final speed limit is determined. Speed limits are not just random guesses as to how fast you should be driving. Contrarily, they are thoroughly evaluated figures to keep you moving at the safest speed possible. For more tips on safe driving visit DefensiveDriving.com.

|

Customer Reviews

Defensivedriving.com has a ShopperApproved rating of 4.7 based on 95566 ratings and reviews.

Thomas United States
Simple and clear
John TX, United States
All very straight forward and essy.
Carrie
Easy to navigate website.
Skyler
Easy to follow directions
Christian
Quick, Fast, & Easy
Cesar
Easy and simple to use.
Roope
Quick, fast and easy!
Diana United States
The course was very helpful and easy to follow. I highly recommended for anyone
Adrian United States
Easy and fast
Allison United States
Easy, simple course!
Brynwyn
Quick and easy!
Kimberly
Straight to the point, easy to navigate site.
Norma United States
The course will be quick and convenient to take from home.
Christina TX, United States
I would recommend you all to everyone over all the other course sites. There are no hidden fees, easy to navigate and same day certificate and driving record. Fantastic!!! Thank you!!
Barbara
Fast and easy
Travis TX, United States
It was quick and easy
James TX, United States
Very simple and easy to follow.
Thomas
So easy to use!
Alexandra
Easy to sign up!
Raylan
Fast & Easy
Jason
Quick and easy.
Ronda United States
Clearly the system is set up for dismissing a ticket not so much for insurance discount. I had to call customer service and have them walk me through the process.
Alejandro
Quick and easy
Mohammed TX, United States
Learned so much, very easy and simple way to become better driver
Michael
Website is easy to navigate
Ricardo
Everything is smooth and efficient
Shanna
Its easy to use!
See all reviews on shopperApproved.com
Why DefensiveDriving.com
  • 20 Years in Business
  • Over 2 Million Customers Served
  • Highest Possible Better Business Bureau Rating
  • Award Winning Course