Higher maximum speed limits in some countries allow drivers an experience rarely offered in the United States. These higher limits usually only apply only to specific stretches of road, so drivers must follow all posted speed limits to avoid legal problems in foreign places.
Drivers must also note that most countries post their speed limits in kilometers per hour (km/h). Only the U.S., U.K., and some small countries and territories use miles per hour (mph). Once they are comfortable with traffic laws and how to properly read and interpret road signs, travelers in several countries can hop in their cars and hit the accelerator.
A Review of Global Maximum Speed Limits
A map of maximum speed limits worldwide shows countries where drivers can fulfill their need for speed. Germany offers autobahns (expressways) with areas that have no speed limits, including the 93-mile stretch between the cities of Berlin and Hamburg. The Isle of Man, located in the Irish Sea between Ireland and England, also offers areas with no speed limits, but great care must be taken on its narrow and windy roads.
Some other areas of the world allow drivers to hit speeds much higher than permitted in the United States. For example:
- Abu Dhabi has two stretches of highway where the speed limit is 160 km/h or 99 mph.
- The maximum speed limit in much of Europe is 130 km/h or 80 mph. However, parts of Poland allow 140 km/h or 87 mph, and Austria has done test runs in anticipation of raising their limit from 130 to 140 km/h. The U.K. is an exception, where the maximum speed limit is 70 mph.
- Drivers in Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and Turkey can legally push their vehicles to 140 km/h or 85 mph.
- Argentina, Russia, and parts of Africa and Australia have roadways with maximum speed limits of 130 km/h or 80mph.
The Role of Weather and Maximum Speed Limits
Bad weather can affect maximum speed limits, but most international traffic laws are somewhat vague in directing drivers to match their speed to conditions.
France has specific weather laws, reducing the speed limit on motorways from 130 km/h to 110 km/h during rain or snow. The countries of Sweden and Finland reduce their maximum speed limits in winter.
Speed Limits in the U.S.
International maximum speed limits are high compared to limits imposed in the United States, though Texas has speed limits of up to 85 mph on highways. Several upper midwestern states allow drivers to go 80 mph on some highways.
Other states, including New York and New Jersey, have a maximum speed limit of 65 mph, but only on specific roadways. In other areas of these two states, the speed limits are even lower.
New York Speed Limits
The maximum speed limit in New York is 65 mph on interstates, but many highways have a 55 mph limit. Speed limits in the state’s congested cities are as low as 25 mph. Fines for first-time offenses range from $45-$600. The state also imposes a surcharge and adds points to licenses that could lead to suspension.
New Jersey Speed Limits
The speed limit in New Jersey is 65 mph on some highways, 55 mph on interstates and other highways, 50 mph on other roadways, and down to 25-35 mph in residential, business, and school districts. The cost of speeding tickets in New Jersey ranges from $85 to $260, with potential court costs, license points, and surcharges starting once drivers reach six points.
What to Do After Getting a Speeding Ticket
If you receive a speeding ticket or are ticketed for another traffic violation, write down as much detail about the circumstances as you can remember. For example, note if there were no speed limit signs or you couldn't see them. Do this as soon as possible as the specifics of an event can easily fade from one’s memory, especially if they are stressed.
Next, contact an attorney who can negotiate or fight the ticket on your behalf. In New York, an attorney can help you avoid missing work for a court appearance. New Jersey usually requires a personal court appearance, but your attorney can argue hardship so they can represent you without you being present.
An experienced attorney can work to reduce your speeding or another ticket to a violation with a lower fine or fewer points. They may even get your case dismissed in court, as they are well-versed in the law and how the courts operate. A reduction or dismissal could also spare you from a hike in your auto insurance rate.
Contact Rosenblum Law for Help
If you love to drive fast, staying out of trouble in the U.S. is harder than in many other countries. If you live in New York or New Jersey and need help with speeding tickets or other traffic violations, contact Rosenblum Law online or call us at 888-815-3649. We've handled more than 100,000 cases with a 97% success rate and use our more than 100 years of combined experience to get your violation settled or dismissed in court.