How Much Could Speeding 108 MPH in a 60 Zone Cost in Washington?
Ever thought about how much it could cost you to drive over 100 mph in a 60 mph zone?
Driving 100+ mph in Washington State Cost You Big
A Washington State Trooper posted on Twitter that they had pulled over a speeder on SR-240 going 108 mph in a 60 mph zone. The State Trooper warned they had received multiple 911 calls about street racing and were reminding people to slow down. On the comment feed from the post, multiple people asked what the penalty was and if the driver was arrested.
Penalties for Speeding 100+ mph in Washington State
The laws for speed in Washington State are tricky because the laws are actually twofold.
Washington State has two different types of speed laws, like most other states, Basic Speed Laws and Absolute Speed Laws, and the laws affect each other.
Washington State Basic Speed Law
The Washington State Basic Speed Law is explained with RCW 46.61.400. It states that "no person shall drive a vehicle on a highway at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions and having regard to the actual and potential hazards then existing."
That basically explains that unsafe driving depends on the conditions while the infraction happened. Driving 60 mph in a 55 mph zone might be considered unsafe if the roads are slick with black ice for example. Driving the same speed in the same area while sunny would not be considered unsafe.
That is Basic Speed Law in its simplest form.
Washington State Absolute Speed Law
Washington State also has a set of absolute speed limits for different areas that are defined also with RCW 46.61.400. These areas were first defined as:
(a) 25 mph on city and town streets;
(b) 50 mph on county roads;
(c) 60 mph on state highways.
Then those limits were adjusted with RCW 46.61.410, saying "the secretary may increase the maximum speed limit on any highway or portion thereof to not more than seventy-five miles per hour in accordance with the design speed thereof." Most highways in Washington I have driven on have a speed limit of 70 mph or less.
Negligent Driving in Washington State
With absolute speed law, the amount you are fined depends on how many miles per hour you were speeding over the limit but you can also be charged with negligent or reckless driving.
They can add Negligent Driving in the Second Degree if the officer finds you were "both negligent and endangers or is likely to endanger any person or property."
They can add charges of Negligent driving in the First Degree if you're guilty of the Second Degree description while under the influence of drugs or alcohol under RCW 46.61.5249.
Fines for Speeding in Washington State
Looking at the laws we just covered, the person speeding on SR-240 could be facing absolute speeding charges and likely Negligent Driving in the Second Degree.
The absolute speed laws for Washington State are broken down into 2 different categories, speed limits above and below 40 mph.
The speed limit, in this case, was posted at 60 mph making this the largest infraction for speeds over 40 mph (RCW 46.61.400) with a speed of 106 mph.
Any speed 40+ mph over the posted speed limit is a $411.00 fine. They could also face Negligent Driving in the 2nd Degree which also carries a $250.00 fine according to RCW 46.61.525.
Other Costs for Driving Over 100 mph in Washington
The total in fines just in tickets from the State of Washington total over $650.00 alone, but there are other costs you will have to deal with after.
Once you are officially charged in court or you just decide to pay the fine, it is officially on your driving record. That will most likely make your insurance costs spike or could eventually cause you to lose your license with multiple infractions.
If someone was injured, there would be a whole new set of costs from medical bills, lawsuits, or other charges from Washington State. No jail time for this driver, the infractions would have to be more severe but still not worth it with over $650 in fines at least.