Slow and steady wins the race, especially when the driving conditions and the roads are dangerous. When the roads are lousy, don’t be afraid to slow down – going the speed limit could actually get you a ticket in British Columbia, says the RCMP.
“Safety first,” says RCMP Corporal Ronda McEwen, with E division traffic services, in an e-mail. “The posted speed limit is the maximum in ideal conditions so, in many cases, travelling at a reduced speed is very much appropriate and required.”
Driving too fast when roads are snowy or slippery or when you can’t see due to fog or snow could get you a $167 fine and 3 demerit points in British Columbia – even if you’re driving at or below the speed limit.
If the speed limit is 120 km/h but you can only go 70 km/h without losing control, then that’s the speed you have to go, McEwen says.
“If a driver travels at a speed that is appropriate given the road conditions, they will not be ticketed,” McEwen says.
The rules vary by province. In Ontario, you could be charged with careless driving if you’re going the speed limit in lousy conditions – but it’s not likely, says OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt.
“Careless driving is a pretty high threshold,” Schmidt says. “The speed limit is the maximum for ideal conditions – in less than ideal conditions, we don’t want people driving dangerously or carelessly.”