Speeding Tickets in Mississippi
Fighting a Speeding Ticket in Mississippi
Mississippi Points – Fines – Reciprocity and Other Issues
There are two types of speed limits: the absolute speed limit and the presumed speed limit.
Absolute Speed Limit in Mississippi
In Mississippi, there exists an “absolute speed limit”, which is the limit that is posted as the maximum speed on fixed or variable signs. It is a strict liability crime if your speed is in excess of that absolute speed limit. Unless there was a legitimate excuse, a strict liability crime means you are in violation of the crime regardless of whether you intended to speed or not. Thus, in Mississippi, motorists are not allowed to temporarily exceed the speed limit to pass other “slower” motorists. There are different absolute speed limits in various parts of the state. Additionally, the absolute speed limits vary with assorted vehicle types. The absolute speed limits are 70 MPH for private motorists or passenger buses on interstate highways or on United States designated highways with 4 or more lanes § 63-3-501(3), 65 MPH for private motorists or passenger buses on other highways § 63-3-501(2), 60 MPH for trucks or truck-trailers on highways with 4 or more lanes § 63-3-501(1), and 55 MPH for trucks or truck-trailers on other highways § 63-3-501(1). The State Highway Commission may decrease the above speed limits if there is a basis provided by engineering and traffic investigations. § 63-3-503(1). However, no posted limit shall be less than 15 MPH. § 63-3-511(1). Other discretions that the State Highway Commission has are setting limits on safe maximum speed limits for bridges or elevated structures and for highway work zones. § 63-3-513 & § 63-3-516(1) respectively. There are also special limits that local governments may adopt on limited portions of highways that are near schools and churches, and have such limits only during certain days or times. § 63-3-515.
Presumed Speed Limit in Mississippi
There is no explicitly stated “presumed speed limit” in Mississippi. A presumed speed limit differs from the absolute speed limit because it is not determined by posted speeds but rather a “reasonable and prudent” speed based on the road and weather conditions. Mississippi’s statutes (laws) do not specifically state if there are different highway speed limits for different types of vehicles for various weather conditions or for different times of the day besides the already mentioned exceptions. However, there is what is called “reckless driving”, which is where motorists drive “in a careless or imprudent manner, without due regard for the width, grade, curves, corner, traffic and use of the streets and highways and all other attendant circumstances.” § 63-3-1213. This statute hints that the motorist should be wary of the “attendant circumstances”, which includes road and weather conditions.
Minimum Speed Limit in Mississippi
In Mississippi, there is also a minimum speed limit. The posted minimum speed limit is 30 MPH on Federal designated highways when no hazard exists and 40 MPH on Interstate highways on 4-lane United States designated highways that have a posted maximum speed limit of 70 MPH. § 63-3-509(1) & § 63-3-509(2) respectively. Furthermore, if a motorist is driving at less than the normal speed of traffic, the motorist “must 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.” § 63-3-603.
Commercial Vehicles in Mississippi
There are special limits for some commercial vehicles as well. School buses may not operate at a speed above 45 MPH when they are transporting children to and from school using regular routes. On authorized school trips, a bus may not operate more than 50 MPH. § 37-41-47. Additionally, trucks or truck trailers cannot travel over 45 MPH where there is inclement weather or when visibility is bad. § 63-3-505.