Driving the speed limit too slowly

Drive slower than the police allow

It is a real nuisance: You drive - of course - in the car towards your destination at the prescribed speed. And suddenly a step on the brakes is inevitable. Why? Because a vehicle in front is literally traveling at "snail's pace" and thus hinders traffic behind.

Exceeding the maximum speed on motorways, on country roads or in the city center is punishable by severe penalties. But what about when the speed falls below the minimum? What happens if someone drives slower than what is indicated on traffic signs? And when does a traffic obstruction start when drivers drive slower than allowed?


Traffic signs for the prescribed minimum speed


When you take a look at the forest of signs in road traffic, it becomes clear with what precision it is determined how fast you are allowed to travel on the streets and highways.




The speed on German roads is clearly regulated for motorists: 50 km / h in built-up areas, 100 km / h on country roads and 130 km / h as a recommended speed on autobahns. If you drive too fast, you have to "plate". But driving too slowly can also be expensive.




But when it comes to the minimum speed, there are comparatively few references. But still: Legislators stipulate that you may not drive as slowly as you want in spite of a lack of signage in this regard.

Blue signs with white numbers indicate the required minimum speed.




Traffic obstruction is punished with fines


Certainly, the danger posed by rushing cars is often much greater than is the case with slow drivers. The latter, however, presumably drive up the stress level for many road users. Or they trigger one or the other outburst of anger in many motorists.

Nevertheless, slow drivers should not feel safe. Anyone who believes that road users who hinder the flow of traffic by driving too slowly are not held accountable is wrong. So there is actually good news for everyone who is upset about "sneaking" in traffic: Slow driving can be really expensive.

Everyone who takes part in road traffic must behave in such a way that other road users are not endangered or harmed. This is stipulated accordingly in the road traffic regulations (§ 1 Paragraph 2 StVO):




"Anyone who takes part in traffic has to behave in such a way that no one else is harmed, endangered or more than unavoidable under the circumstances, hindered or annoyed." (Quote)




Driving slowly, for example at a speed of less than 50 km / h on a country road, costs between 20 and 35 euros if you are caught by the police. Even at speeds of less than 60 km / h on motorways, you should expect to be asked to pay. Especially if you cause an accident by falling below the minimum speed. In Section 3 (2) of the StVO there is even a note for slow drivers:




"Without a valid reason, no road user is allowed to drive so slowly that others are hindered." (Quote)





Sneaking allowed - justification welcome


In general, you should always have a valid reason to justify driving too slowly. Extreme weather conditions, for example, are a good reason. Even with insufficient engine power, your "friend and helper" turns a blind eye under certain conditions. In principle, however, you should always drive at a reasonable speed and take care not to obstruct the following traffic.

By the way:

  • Drivers who consciously drive too slowly, for example to “teach” other road users, are liable to prosecution. In this context, this educational measure is interpreted as coercion.
  • Anyone who blocks the left lane on the motorway permanently and without a cautious move at minimum speed could risk a fine.

Experience has shown that the number of fines for driving too slowly is negligibly small compared to the “toll tickets” for speeders. Nevertheless, you should be prepared to receive a fine if you exceed the speed limit.

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