Va. Code § 46.2-861: Reckless by Excessive Speed for the Conditions
Driving at or below the speed limit can also be considered reckless driving if the road conditions are not safe enough for that speed. For example, a person driving 65 mph in a 65 mph zone during a snow storm or heavy rain could be charged with reckless driving if the road conditions are not safe enough for that speed. This is a very subjective code section and is harder to prove than reckless driving by speed under 46.2-862.
Va. Code 46.2-861 Reckless Driving – Driving too Fast For Highway Conditions
“A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who exceeds a reasonable speed under the circumstances and traffic conditions existing at the time, regardless of any posted speed limit.”
Penalties for Fairfax Reckless Driving Too Cast for Conditions
- Class 1 misdemeanor (Criminal Conviction)
- 0 to 12 months in jail
- $0-$2,500 in fines
- 0-6 months loss of license
- 6 Va DMV demerit points
Defenses for Reckless Driving by Speeding too Fast for Conditions
There are two main ways we prevent conviction for reckless driving too fast for conditions in Fairfax:
1) We attack the culpability. We try to show reasons why the driver does not deserve these harsh punishments and ask the court to reduce the charge to a less sever traffic ticket.
2) We attack the accuracy and admissibility of the police officer’s speed equipment and the techniques he used to measure the driver’s speed. AS well as attack the officer’s subjective opinion about the weather conditions.
When 46.2-861 is charged after an accident we also attack the evidence. Often officers have little or no evidence regarding the actual driving behavior but instead assume that the driver was simply driving too fast for conditions because there was an accident in bad weather.
For more information about reckless driving defenses, click here.
How to Prepare for a Reckless Driving (Too Fast for Conditions) Trial
Some of the things we recommend drivers do, can include (click the links for more information):
- Taking a Driver Improvement Course
- Getting a Speedometer Calibration
- Get a copy of the officer’s accident report (if there was an accident)
- Writing a brief biography about yourself
- Writing a detailed incident summary about yourself
- Getting a copy of your DMV record
Likely Lesser Offenses For Reckless Driving – Excessive Speed for Conditions
In Fairfax, prosecutors will not negotiated with unrepresented defendants; however, your attorney might be able to get the reckless driving charge reduced from a criminal reckless driving charge to one of the following non criminal traffic tickets:
- Improper Driving
- Failure to Obey a Highway Sign
- Failure to Pay Full Time and Attention