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Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Traffic Law
Satisfied Customers: 27621
Experience:  Lawyer. Former judicial law clerk. Worked for District Attorney's Office in Traffic Court.
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Lucy I hope you are having a The situation is this, I got a

Customer Question

Hi Lucy my name is***** hope you are having a good evening. The situation is this, I got a speeding ticket for doing 86mph in a 70mph zone, my defense is that when policeman clocked my speed I was just coming off an up hill grade onto a downhill grade, I had my cruse control set at the appropriate speed at the time I reached the top of the hill causing my truck to increase its speed, also I went ahead and had my speedometer checked by a macanic who gave me a print out that states my truck goes a little faster than it reads due to tires being larger than stock, not much faster just 2mils more than speedometer reads. My question to you is , is there a law that says anything in regards to increasing speed when switching from a uphill grade to downhill grade?
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Traffic Law
Expert:  Lucy, Esq. replied 10 months ago.

Hi Joel,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today. I'm sorry for the delay - I'd already signed off for the night when you posted.

There is unfortunately nothing in the law that provides for increasing speed when switching from uphill to downgrade. Many people would argue that it's even more important to control a vehicle on a downgrade (and therefore drive slower) because of the possibility of losing control. It's true that vehicles set to cruise control tend to increase speed when going up a hill, but then it's up to the driver to correct for that to make sure they're still driving a safe speed when they come down the hill. And the variance in the speedometer you mentioned unfortunately won't explain being 16 mph over the speed limit.

You have the ability to go in and talk to the district attorney and ask if they would be willing to lower the fine for you. This is very common and is something they frequently will do. If you have a non-commercial license, you can also request to do traffic court to have the points removed from your record (as long as you haven't been for 18 months). Based on what you've said, one of those options is probably the best way to reduce the costs associated with the ticket. You do have a right to go to court and testify that you were not going 86 mph, but in my experience, the judge tends to believe the police officer, who will testify that he visually estimated your speed at 86 - and coming down over the hill isn't a defense. It's possible that the officer won't show up, but that doesn't happen often.

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