Speedometer Calibrations

Speedometer Calibrations

Any driver charged with reckless driving by speed in Fairfax should discuss getting a speedometer calibration with their attorney. The only down side to getting a speedometer calibration is cost and time (typically about $70 to $100 and about one hour).

What is a Speedometer Calibration

A speedometer calibration is when a mechanic checks the accuracy of your car’s speedometer. If your speedometer is low then the argument can be made that you did not know you were going as fast as you were going. Some judges or prosecutors may amend a driver’s case to reflect the speed their speedometer said they were going.

For example, if your speedometer is 3 mph low and you are charged with 86 mph in a 55 mph zone some judges may agree to treat you the same as a driver accused of driving 83 mph in a 55 mph zone. Even though 83 mph in a 55 mph zone is still reckless driving, the punishment is usually much less severe and it could make a major difference in your case.

What if my speedometer is accurate?

In Fairfax, speedometer calibrations are also useful if you want to testify that you know you were not driving the speed you were accused of going. If you plan on testifying that you looked at your speedometer and it said you were driving slower than the speed on the ticket then you should get a speedometer calibration to verify that your speedometer was reasonably accurate

Calibration Certificate

If you get a speedometer calibration, make sure to also get a speedometer calibration certificate. Without the certificate, your calibration is useless. Be careful, some mechanics (especially dealers) tend to generate useless speedometer calibration certificates. A Fairfax reckless driving attorney will be able to assist you in obtaining a reliable speedometer calibration.

A speedometer calibration certificate should identify the car and state the various speeds at which the car was tested. The speeds at which the car was tested should at least come close to the speed on the ticket (i.e. don’t have the car tested at only 25 mph if you are charged with going 85mph). And most importantly, the mechanic should record the speedometer’s results at the various speeds.

There are dozens of places in Virginia where you can go to get a speedometer calibrated. Here is a list of some places that are equipped to producing calibration certificates for court cases.

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