Certainly there can be no argument that speeding is dangerous and the cause of thousands of accidents and deaths each year. But driving under the speed limit is equally as dangerous – and a topic not many people consider.
Unless a minimum speed is posted there is no fixed minimum speed for highway driving. Sometimes weather conditions dictate driving under the posted speed limit to ensure safety.
However, you can be cited for obstructing traffic if indeed you are impeding the safe forward progress of other vehicles on the roadways. Texas Transportation Code Section 545.363 provides:
“An operator may not drive so slowly as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic, except when reduced speed is necessary for safe operation or in compliance with law.”
It is possible to get a ticket for the driving too slowly – particularly on the highways. If a driver is going fifteen miles below the speed limit in good driving conditions, then this might be considered to be impeding traffic and it is a ticketable offense.
The times that require a driver to slow their vehicle below posted speed limits include the duty to “decrease speed when approaching and crossing an intersection, when approaching and going around a curve, when approaching a hill crest, when traveling upon any narrow or winding roadway, or when special hazards exist with respect to pedestrians or other traffic or by reason of weather or highway conditions”.
Further, speed must be decreased as necessary to avoid a collision.
One of the biggest factors for accidents is disparity of speed and you actually can have a truck going so slow on the highway that it is a hazard to the motoring public. Or worse an illegally parked semi truck.
In all, it’s best to just use common sense. Slow down in nasty weather – otherwise in good driving weather stay at or near posted speed limits on the busy highways and always slow down when necessary to avoid an accident.
You may also wish to consider your vehicle location relative to an 18-wheeler in that big trucks have known blind shots that cause many accidents. Also it takes a commercial truck up to 1/3 longer to stop and for that reason having a truck on your tail is to avoided whenever possible.