Ohio Speed Limits, Laws, and Fines | YourMechanic Advice

Ohio Speed Limits, Laws, and Fines

Following is an overview of the laws, limits, and fines as they relate to speeding traffic violations in the state of Ohio.

Speed limits in Ohio

Ohio is the only state east of the Mississippi that permits a 70 mph speed limit on non-freeway roadways.

70 mph: the Ohio Turnpike, rural freeways, and some portions of US-30 and US-33

55-70 mph: other divided highways

50-65 mph: urban interstates and highways

50 mph: controlled-access highways and expressways within municipal corporate districts

25 mph: residential and urban districts

20 mph: school zones during school hours

15 mph: alleys in municipal corporate districts

Ohio code on reasonable and prudent speed

Maximum speed law:

According to section 4511.21(A) of OH vehicle code, “No person shall operate a vehicle at a speed greater or less than is reasonable or proper, having due regard to the traffic, surface, and width of the street or highway and any other conditions.”

Minimum speed law:

Sections 4511.22(A) and 4511.25(B) state:

“No person shall operate a vehicle at such a slow speed as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic.”

“A person driving at less than the normal speed of traffic shall drive in the right-hand lane then available for traffic or as close as practicable to the right-hand curb or edge of the highway.”

Minimum posted speed limits are typically 40-45 mph.

Due to variations in speedometer calibration, tire size, and margins of error in speed-detecting technology, it’s uncommon for an officer to pull a driver over for going less than five miles above the speed limit. However, technically any amount over can be considered a speed violation so best practices are to stay within the limit.

Ohio has a mix of absolute and prima facie speed limit laws. This means in some cases, a driver may be able to argue that they were driving safely even if exceeding the posted limit. Or, a driver may choose to go to court and claim their innocence based upon one of the following:

  • The driver may oppose the determination of speed. In order to claim this defense a driver must know how his or her speed was determined and then learn how to disprove its accuracy.

  • A driver may claim that an emergency situation caused the driver to break the speed limit in order to prevent injury or damage to themselves or others.

  • The driver may claim a case of mistaken identity. If a police officer clocks a driver speeding and subsequently has to find them again in traffic, it’s possible that they could have made a mistake and pulled the wrong car over.

Penalty for exceeding the speed limit in Ohio

First-time violators may:

  • Be fined up to $100

  • Have their license suspended for up to six months

Penalty for reckless driving in Ohio

There is no set amount by which exceeding the speed limit constitutes reckless driving; rather that determination is made based upon the factors involved in the violation.

First-time violators may:

  • Be fined up to $100

  • Have their license suspended for up to six months

Violators may be required to take remedial driving instruction, and/or may be able to have their speeding fine or points reduced by doing so.


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