Following is an overview of the laws, limits, and fines as they relate to speeding traffic violations in the state of West Virginia.

Speed limits in West Virginia

70 mph: rural interstates

65 mph: four-lane divided highways (some urban stretches 50 mph)

55-65 mph: urban interstates

60 mph: sharp curves along stretches of the West Virginia Turnpike

55 mph: country highways

25-55 mph: cities and towns, as posted

15 mph: school zones

West Virginia code on reasonable and prudent speed

Maximum speed law:

According to section 17C-6-1(a) of WV vehicle code, “No person may drive a vehicle at speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the existing conditions and the actual and potential hazards.”

Minimum speed law:

Section 17C-6-3(a) and 17C-7-1(b) states:

“No person shall drive a motor vehicle at such a slow speed as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic.”

“A person driving at less than the normal speed of traffic shall drive in the right-hand lane then available for traffic or as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the roadway.”

Due to variations in speedometer calibration, tire size, and margins of error in speed-detecting technology, it’s uncommon for an officer to pull a driver over for going less than five miles above the speed limit. However, technically any amount over can be considered a speed violation so best practices are to stay within the limit.

While it may be difficult to fight a speeding ticket in West Virginia due to the absolute speed limit law, a driver may choose to go to court and claim their innocence based upon one of the following:

  • The driver may oppose the determination of speed. In order to claim this defense a driver must know how his or her speed was determined and then learn how to disprove its accuracy.

  • A driver may claim that an emergency situation caused the driver to break the speed limit in order to prevent injury or damage to themselves or others.

  • The driver may claim a case of mistaken identity. If a police officer clocks a driver speeding and subsequently has to find them again in traffic, it’s possible that they could have made a mistake and pulled the wrong car over.

Penalty for exceeding the speed limit in West Virginia

First-time violators may:

  • Be fined up to $100

  • Be sentenced to up to six months of jail time (if exceeding a school zone speed limit by more than 15 mph)

  • Have their license suspended for up to one year

Penalty for reckless driving in West Virginia

There is no set speed in West Virginia at which violating the speed limit is considered reckless driving. That determination depends upon the circumstances surrounding the violation.

First-time violators may:

  • Be fined between $25 and $500

  • Be sentenced to between five and 90 days of jail time

  • Have their license suspended for up to one year

Violators may be able to reduce driving record points by attending a driver improvement program.

This article originally appeared on as West Virginia Speed Limits, Laws, and Fines.

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