Hartley, IA asked in Traffic Tickets for Iowa

Q: Am I allowed to speed up above the speed limit to overtake a vehicle?

I got pulled over for going over the speed limit while overtaking a vehicle. An officer was going 60 in front of a vehicle ahead of me. I overtook the car and after overtaking I slowed back down to the same speed the officer was going.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Benjamin Kohn
Benjamin Kohn
  • Traffic Tickets Lawyer
  • Mountain View, CA
  • Licensed in Iowa

A: Speed limit violations in Iowa are, unfortunately, strict liability (e.g. you're guilty if you are operating a vehicle on a public roadway that exceeded the posted speed limit regardless of your subjective reasoning, intent, or knowledge of doing so). Inability to overtake another vehicle without speeding would not be a defense to speeding; rather, you would be prohibited from passing in such a circumstance. That said, you are not required to drive slower than, or match the speed of, a police officer near you if the speed you are going is otherwise lawful (compliant with the speed limit, safe in the conditions, and not violating any special rules for road construction or other special zones).

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