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How many miles over the posted speed limit do you usually drive?

Asked at Borders, 700 N.H. on July 6, 2005

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Photo of Ron Bowling

“Seven and a half, so I can get there if I’m in a hurry.”

Photo of Hilary Morton

“I probably drive 6 over on the highway. I commute daily, so I’m pretty careful.”

Photo of Cari Davis

“Five, because I feel like it’s just enough to go a little over and not get a ticket, but I’m also late a lot because of it.”

Photo of Matthew Maksimowicz

“Between 5 and 10, because you probably won’t get pulled over if you aren’t going faster than that.”

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average 12 years, 11 months ago

I'm rarely in any hurry driving, so I tend to take 2 lanes and good county roads at the limit or a little above/below. When I'm obviously slowing people down on a hilly 2-lane, I'll occasionally pull off for a wide shoulder and let the anxious people pass. You all can have your freeways.

GreenEyedBlues 12 years, 11 months ago

My high school physics teacher taught us how to account for 9mph over the speed limit should we ever get pulled over for speeding.

I forgot most of it, and I probably could B.S. my way through it if I ever needed to, but I don't think talking back [or down] to a cop is the most clever thing to do.

Nine is my magic number while playing Speed Racer!

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

Christie if your driving 5 mph under the speed limit YOU are causing hazzardous conditions and will cause a wreck!

cutny 12 years, 11 months ago

uh...gee Ron, how's that extra half-mile an hour working out for you?

HighScore 12 years, 11 months ago

I typically drive between 10 and 15 miles above the speed limit. I would be lying if I said I never got any tickets. I have gotten 1 within the last year and 3 within the last 7 years. Just be smart and keep your eyes open for Johnny Law.

For all of you that drive within 5 mph of the speed limit, please stay out of my fast lane. I find nothing more annoying than those who feel that they must drive in the fast lane, no matter how slow they are driving.

grilled_cheese 12 years, 11 months ago

Usually, back home on K-10 I go about 5 over, just usually whatever the "flow" of traffic is.

But, now that I am in Houston for the summer, I go somewhere between 15 and 20 mph over. It's a madhouse out here! The range of speeds on highways here vary from 10 under to 30 over. Sheesh!

italianprincess 12 years, 11 months ago

If any I go around maybe 2 to 3 miles over.

My mom says I'm the calm one in our family and all my siblings drive much faster. My driving record is clean as far as any moving violations, but have a few parking tickets for downtown.

Lifes to short to be in such a hurry. I figure why take a chance and rush , you will get there. I'm known for running late anyway, and my friends know I will be there. If I know I have to be somewhere thats majorly on time important I get up a bit earlier that way I'm not late.

Whats funny is I get the last laugh when the drivers who are going faster then me are the ones who are pulled over just ahead.

Slow down people, please use your blinkers, get off your cell phones, and pay attention to what you are doing. Its your insurance thats going to go up not the other drivers when you get into an accident.

christie 12 years, 11 months ago

How irresponsible. We have men and women dying in Iraq over Oil and you think it's OK to speed and waste. I bet those who drive the fastest all have those little stickers that say "Support the Troops". I say if you want to do that then drive 5 miles UNDER the speed limit and conserve your gasoline. I think this nation should mandate a federal limit of 55.

andisue 12 years, 11 months ago

Look at the math. If you're going to drive 70 miles to get somewhere and you're going 70 mph, you obviously get there in an hour. If you're going 75 mph, you get there in 56 minutes, which is only 4 minutes faster! Even if you go 80 mph, you'll get there in 52.5 minutes, which only saves you 7.5 minutes than if you went the speed limit! Obviously, you save a little more time on a longer trip, but most of us only take short trips. And if it's less than 70 miles, imagine how little time you actually save. And for what? For an increased risk of a serious car wreck, for the possibility of getting a ticket, and when you're in the mind set that you're in a hurry, you get all worked up about it, which causes stress, and we all know that we need less of that in our lives. If you just think that you're not in a hurry by going the speed limit, you can relax and all the other stupid drivers won't make you so mad!

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

In town stay to the posted speed. On the Interstate within 10. Most of the time I take 24/40 so whatever I feel comfortable with that day sometimes as much as 15. Really Irks me when people on 24/40 or similar 2 lanes drive 10-15 UNDER the limit!

sunflower_sue 12 years, 11 months ago

In town, I try to stick to the limit...especially when in residential neighborhoods. (I once had a college student lay his bicycle over in front of me coming down off that hill, and had I been going any faster, well.....) I always try to keep kids in mind while I'm driving. It is a great mind tool for slowing me down.

On the highway I go no more that 5 over.

Interstate...I try to go with the flow so as not to cause an accident.

(I did go over 90 only once and it was to get my hubby to the hospital. Luckily, I didn't kill anyone on the way there!)

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

omb Question for ya. do people still pull over to let truckers go by down there? Was in Texas several years ago in a big rig and people would pull over and let us pass it was kinda cool. :)

sunflower_sue 12 years, 11 months ago

happy one, I hope you're not lumping the farmers into the category with the 10-15 under on 24-40. Just remember: tractors aren't built for speed, they have to get from field to field somehow, and they grow your food for you and are some of the hardest working people you'll ever meet. Let's be nice to them, they deserve our respect.

But as for Joe Schmo in the Buick that's just rubber-necking. I fully agree. WHAT are THEY doing?

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

OH NO!! I definately did not include the farmers!! They're out their workin their tails off no way do I include them : )

sunflower_sue 12 years, 11 months ago

happy, you touched on something that I think 80% of the population does not understand...Semi's CANNOT stop on a dime! I've seen so many people pull out in front of a big rig and then decide that they aren't in a hurry after all, and slow down to 10 mph. This is a very effective way to GET YOURSELF KILLED! Let's respect the truckers, as well!

dirkleisure 12 years, 11 months ago

There are speed limits? I do 85 mph everywhere. Those roundabouts they are installing on Harvard won't do anything to keep me from doing 85 mph.

christie 12 years, 11 months ago

I don't drive the interstates. I ride a bike to work and take the bus around town whenever possible. By the way, flashing lights to warn of radar setups are obstructions of justice and you can be ticketed for same. So says my police friend. And I don't agree. When the Government mandated 55 this nation was saving millions of gallons of gas per day. So put that in your pipe and smoke it. It's the least we can do for the brave men and women sent to fight a war that nobody wants.

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

You definately do not want to pull out in front of, drive to close behind, or ride in the blind spot of a trucker. After having gone on the road in one you learn real fast, YOU will lose not the trucker!

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

Christie you also have to realize when the govt mandated 55 it was how many years ago look at how many more miles people drive today they aren't working in hometown any more! Truckers have been using their flashing lights and CB's for many many years to warn each other. And as far as putting something in a pipe.....maybe you need to put YOURS down I think you've had enough you are becoming somewhat delusional!

linux_chick 12 years, 11 months ago

I'm not trying to go off topic, but I want to bring attention to this article today.

I want to encourage everyone who wants to, to contact our representatives and support Kansas Public schools.

Contact Sebelius:

Kansas Supreme Court Contact Person:

I'm sure many of you are already informed. Thanks

linux_chick 12 years, 11 months ago

Yeah... and I actually drive the speed limit most of the time. Usually it makes other drivers pretty mad.

grilled_cheese 12 years, 11 months ago

The thought that cars get better gas mileage at 55mph is just a myth. If people took the time to get to know their vehicles, they would understand that each one is unique. My husband's classic Italian Lancia gets the best gm at 80mph. My new Hyundai preforms best at about 67mph.

Anyway, my brother in law, a marine stationed near Fallujah currently, speeds (ummm, 99.7 % of us do). I highly doubt he feels that my speeding, and his speeding, is a hinderence to the cause he is fighting for. So, when he arrives back in the states, and is driving around, maybe speeding, driving his low gm Jepp, does that mean he is not supporting himself? How silly.

Liberty 12 years, 11 months ago

"The letter of the law kills, while the spirit of the law gives life".

I think that this article is heading towards a chip monitored car by satellite, like OnStar. They want to make the case that the public just can't perfectly obey the "authorities" and you will need constant monitoring like a chip that monitors your speed constantly and will shut down your car if you violate the "law". Get ready, it is coming because there are always those that want total control over others. Especially those that love big government and more and more laws to control the masses.

Liberty 12 years, 11 months ago

Welcome to the largest developing police state in the world. The United States.

linux_chick 12 years, 11 months ago

OMB, free of charge and made out of some heat-resistant plastic so everyone can see the inside parts and build it themselves?

Somehow, an "open-sourced" car doesn't sound as good of an idea as an open-sourced OS.

italianprincess 12 years, 11 months ago


I may just pull my child out of public school and put him in private.

I may have to another job to pay for it, but at least I won't have to sit around and wait for the state to figure out what they are doing.

Didn't we go through this already last year right before school was going to start?

Someone better get their you know whats in gear and figure something out and fast. People are going to start pulling their kids out of the public school system.

I'm still going to drive the speed limit like I already do, so don't ride my @&% or I may just brake for an ant or something.......LOL

Liberty 12 years, 11 months ago

Yes TOB, the tax on miles driven that they want to start is direct funding for the United Nations.

Liberty 12 years, 11 months ago

While what I say may seem extreme sometimes, it is usually based on what our government is trying to do to us. It is extreme because our Federal government is becoming more and more extreme. The national ID card (which Congress passed, probably without reading the bill) will have an RFID in it so they can track and trace you (that means that the public is considered to be a terrorist). You are now considered to be the enemy. So all of this control coming down the pike is to control you, not just a terrorist. The 'war on terror' is just an excuse to implement all of this control grid with constant references back to 9/11 to justify it and to shut up any opposition.

linux_chick 12 years, 11 months ago

IP, yep. Last May this happened. What is wrong with our legislative session?

I can certainly understand the growing appeal to home school, or shifting to private... but that won't work for everyone in KS. Additionally, I find private schools less desirable on account of my disappointment of schools' racial (re-)segregating.

But in the end, do what you have to do for your kids.

linux_chick 12 years, 11 months ago

TOB, in response to a post you made way earlier... I always stay in the right lane, so don't yell at me when you pass me like I'm walking backwards. ;)

bankboy119 12 years, 11 months ago

GM already has a little black box they can use against you in court. The government has also said that the dealers do not even have to let you know about it anymore. If I remember correctly it is in ALL GM made cars now. The box tells if you were wearing your seat belt, how often, how fast you usually drive, how fast you take turns, the works. And yes it has been used against people in court that were involved with wrecks. I believe that they are in other cars(not sure on this though) but because I know they are in GM I will never buy a GM made car. It's ridiculous.

neopolss 12 years, 11 months ago

suspected terrorist

Points to self <-------------

Guilty until proven wealthy.

Grammaton 12 years, 11 months ago

Christie, I totally understand your argument, however it costs more gas and oil to drive in town doing the speed limit than it does on the highway, interstate, etc, because of all the stop-and-go traffic. Just FYI.

Not putting holes in you're argument, I'm just saying I don't want a mandated 55 mph speed limit in town.

italianprincess 12 years, 11 months ago

This is true and I would not want my kids to ever have to go through the racial sep thing if possible. The schools they attend now are great and the mix of kids is wonderful. Its nice to see a melting pot there and for kids to have a chance to meet other kids of different races. My boys are biracial so its nice to know they have friends of all races at school.

I can't afford private school for my kids so they will stay in the public schools like I did growing up.

I just hope the upper hand gets it together real soon for our kids........they are going to be the ones suffering here.

Remember that song by Sammy Hager........ " I Can't Drive 55 ?" I remember when the speed limit on the freeway in Cali was 55. I also remember when they talked about raising the speed limit here to 75 I believe.

If you raise it higher people are going to drive faster. I can just see it now.......Speed limits been changed to 80, so everyone will drive at least 85 to 90.

Slow down everyone, lifes to short, don't be in such a hurry to get may not ever make it.

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

IP I too can't afford to send my kids to private schools and think Lawrence has a wonderful public system. I just hope they pull their heads out of their butts soon because the kids are the only ones that will be hurt by this.

neopolss 12 years, 11 months ago

55 ... ugh.

If the whole system were like that, what would be the point of owning a Mustang or Corvette?

As it is I rarely get to redline it, except for the occaisional thrill I get from overdrive in the passing lane.

Jaime Baggett 12 years, 11 months ago

For those people who do not know the rule on the highways, I would like to make it very clear: SLOW DRIVERS TO THE RIGHT AND FAST DRIVERS TO THE LEFT. Someone should post a sign on the highways!

bankboy119 12 years, 11 months ago

You have to admit though, Kansas isn't half as bad as Missouri. People drive 55 in the fast lane. It's ridiculous.

craigers 12 years, 11 months ago

I usually drive about 8-9 miles an hour over the speed limit. And the whole conserve gas at 55mph is ludicrous. It depends on the vehicle and what engine you have. My V6 hovers at about 2300rmps when I am doing 78. Sometimes when I am doing around 55mph it drops down a gear and the rpms are higher which leads to more fuel consumption. I completely agree with Grilled cheese. Slow people keep to the right.

BunE 12 years, 11 months ago

Liberty: You are correct and I will take it one step further. It is the Corporate Interests that are pushing this control. They want to sell us everything. Soap, politicians, laws, and cars.

I am waiting for the UPC sign on my forehead.

happyone 12 years, 11 months ago

OMG TOM that is absolutely hillarious!!

Jay Bird 12 years, 11 months ago

I drive like a bat out of hell. I don't have a support our troops sticker, and I have FULL coverage. If I bounce off of anything, someone's getting paid. My car wasn't built for to sip gas. If you don't like the way I drive, stay off the sidewalk. And no I don't have a SUV. If I want to burn that much gas, I'll spin the tires.

Carmenilla 12 years, 11 months ago

If you bounce off of someONE than they are not getting paid but rest.

GreenEyedBlues 12 years, 11 months ago

Happy Go Lucky that is sweet! I used to commute from Lawrence to Top City and I-70 is the perfect place to be Wario Andretti!

Your car BOUNCES? You must have a blast on cloverleafs and roundabouts!

squishypoet 12 years, 11 months ago

I drive 4 over in town, but right on the button at night, especially coming up 6th street... when there's less traffic those cops get antsy!

On the highway I'll go 6-8 over.

My boyfriend's dad shells out hefty "donations" to the police, sheriff, etc. and gets these stickers he can put in his car windows... my boyfriend has gotten out of a couple of tickets just by indicating the sticker and saying yes, that's mine, I did donate, thank you very much, no, please, you don't need to kiss my butt, have a good night officer.

squishypoet 12 years, 11 months ago

P.S. I think the "bounce off someONE" meant if you bounce off of a pedestrian, not off of a car.

jonas 12 years, 11 months ago

I just try to make sure 1/4 to a 1/3 of the drivers are going somewhat faster than me.

Added to the "don't do anything stupid in front of trucks" comment, I'd like to add the same about busses. You wouldn't believe how hard they are to stop, and there are usually people that get flopped around by a sudden stop. The things people do make me wonder, for sure.

Wish I had seen Tom's post.

pylon25 12 years, 11 months ago

9 over on the highway, less than 5 over in town. I figure that with a legal tolerance of a few miles per hour on a speedometer, and i'd be the same on a radar gun, you've got some wiggle room if pulled over for less than 5-6 over.

And on the "flashing lights" thing being an obstruction of justice, i'd politely tell the cop to shove it. I'd like to see that hold up in court. Just because the cop lectures you or even tickets you doesnt mean its right or legal. It's a citation, no a conviction. Any cop that pulls you over for that has too much free time or is wielding his "power" like a 12 year old with a pistol.

l_eustacy 12 years, 11 months ago

Flashing your lights is not obstruction of justice unless there is a specific law to address it; there is no official meaning attached to doing it. Radar detectors do the same thing and they're only illegal where there are specific laws. I've even stopped within view of the police taking radar and flashed every car; there was nothing they could do about it. The cop that gave Bob a lecture should have been disciplined for intimidating him. I hope everyone continues to flash their lights and if you aren't keeping up with the flow, stay in the right lane. The roundabouts and speedbumps are the "Berlin wall" of America. I hope someday we can stand and sing on top of them while they are hammered to bits by the masses. God Bless America!

Chris Bohling 12 years, 11 months ago

I drive the speed limit and stay in the right lane. I don't really care if you're going 5 over, but what really makes me mad is when I have to be in the left lane (like to turn left), and I'm still going the speed limit, and somebody passes me on the right and honks.

gccs14r 12 years, 11 months ago


If you look at it as only one trip, then sure, but add up all the minutes over time and it becomes a real number. Back in the 80s I calculated how much time I'd saved by driving 10 over all the time and found that it was about a thousand hours. Averaged out as workdays, that's about six months of travel time.

weatherman77 12 years, 11 months ago

When I lived in Lawrence I would drive the limit in town and then 5-7 over on highways and freeways. I usually tried to stay in the slow lane unless passing. But then I moved to Houston where every lane is the fast lane and now I do 5 over on side streets and 5-20 over on the freeways depending on the time of day and the speed of the traffic. Sometimes during rush hour in the morning when you hit a spot where the traffic is actually moving the average speed of traffic is about 15 over. Also, when in houston in a construction zone you must speed up or risk being run over.

49cent 12 years, 11 months ago

I usually like to drive in the left lane because it's easier to throw my beer cans out the window.

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