Ask a Trooper: Is any speeding tolerated on Minnesota roads?

Published 9:42 am Thursday, February 9, 2017

Ask a Trooper by Troy Christianson 

Troy Christianson is a sergeant with the Minnesota State Patrol.

Question:  How fast can I drive before getting stopped? Is there a tolerance?

Troy Christianson

Troy Christianson

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Answer:  State Patrol policy does not allow for speeds in excess of the posted limit.

Officers are required to follow their departmental policy and take into consideration many other factors (roadway, weather, lighting and traffic), including common sense.  Speeding, along with driving too fast for conditions, is discouraged by law enforcement everywhere. 

Minnesota law regarding speed states that no person shall drive a vehicle on a highway at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions. Every driver is responsible for knowing actual and potential hazards that may exist on the highway and must use due care in operating a vehicle.

I believe most vehicles that leave the roadway or spin out in the winter season are due to driving too fast for the conditions. Remember that the posted speed limit might not be the safest speed when the roads become slippery.

Drivers need to understand that speed kills. In the last five years (2011-15), speed has contributed to an average of 81 deaths and 211 life-changing injuries a year.

For every 10 mph you drive over the speed limit, your chance of being seriously injured or killed in a crash is doubled. So, when traveling 70 mph your chance of being seriously injured or killed in a crash is four times greater than when you are traveling 50 mph.

Remember, too, that fines double when traveling 20 mph or more over the speed limit, and if your speed is in excess of 100 mph, you can lose your license for up to six months.  The driver may also be cited under the Duty to Drive with Due Care law in Minnesota.

You can avoid a ticket — and a crash — if you simply buckle up, drive at safe speeds, pay attention and always drive sober.  Help us drive Minnesota toward zero deaths.

If you have any questions concerning traffic related laws or issues in Minnesota, send your questions to Trooper Troy Christianson, Minnesota State Patrol, at 2900 48th St. NW, Rochester, MN 55901-5848; or reach him at