Why Driving Too Slowly Is Dangerous?

Most people understand that speeding on the roadway is incredibly dangerous and can lead to severe accidents and injuries. Speeding does not even have to mean driving over the speed limit. This can simply be driving too fast for conditions. However, most people do not think about whether or not driving too slowly can be dangerous. Here, we want to answer a few questions:

  • Is driving too slowly on the roadway dangerous?
  • If so, why is that the case?

You need to be armed with the most relevant safety information when you are on the roadway, and that means understanding hazards that are not talked about as often.

Is driving too slowly dangerous?

First, we need to point out that most state laws, including those in California, regulate slow driving when it comes to left lanes of highways. The California Highway Patrol has even had to post reminders on social media about staying in lanes to the right of a “fast lane” for doing anything other than passing another vehicle. In California, state law allows officers to pull drivers over for driving slowly in the left highway lane.

When slow drivers continuously operate in the left lane of multilane roads, other drivers are forced to pass on the right. This causes significant confusion and disorganization because there should be a general method that everyone follows on crowded roadways. When this method gets thrown off by a slow driver, there is an increased risk of accidents for everybody else on the roadway.

In many cases, drivers will see not only a maximum speed limit posted, but also a minimum speed for drivers. In some cases, cars on a two-lane road with five or more vehicles behind them are required to pull over to a designated turn out area to alleviate the traffic jam.

Different types of slow drivers

There are various reasons why a driver may be operating slowly. This can include the following:

  • Distracted driving. No matter the situation, driving distracted behind the wheel is dangerous. Whether a driver is distracted by their cell phone or by somebody else in the vehicle, this can lead to slow driving that can cause a hazard.
  • Tourists/sightseers. When someone is on vacation or in an unfamiliar place, they may end up driving slower. This could be because they do not know where they are going or because they are trying to look at the sites.
  • New drivers. While new drivers are often associated with speeding, they are just as likely to drive too slowly an attempt to avoid accidents or because they are scared.
  • Older citizens. Many senior drivers operate too slowly for various reasons. This could be because of worsening vision or because stiffened joins reduce the amount of pressure they can exert on the gas pedal.

Slow driving accident injuries

According to the California Office of Traffic Safety, there were more than 273,000 injuries and more than 3,600 fatalities caused by traffic accidents during the latest reporting year in the state. Just because one driver is operating slowly does not mean that serious accidents cannot occur in these instances. Other, faster-moving vehicles often end up colliding with the slower-moving vehicle or with other vehicles on the roadway while avoiding the slow vehicle. Injuries from these incidents are often severe, leading to lasting impacts for victims.

For more information about how to deal with your motor vehicle crash, contact our Orange County car accident attorney today.