Arizona Speeding Laws

Basic Speed Rule:  A person shall not drive a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent speed under the conditions and actual and potential hazards then existing.  ARIZ § 28-701(A) & (D)

Penalty for Exceeding Speed Limit

A first time violator may be:

  • fined not more than $250, and
  • the violator’s license may be suspended not more than one year.

Penalty for Reckless Driving

A first time violator may be:

  • fined not more than $750,
  • sentenced to jail time of not more than 120 days, and
  • the violator’s license may be suspended not more than 90 days.

Limited Sanctions for Exceeding a Posted Speed Limit of 55 MPH. 

On highways with a posted maximum speed limit of 55 MPH, a person, who exceeds this limit but whose speed was less than 65 MPH, is subject to a fine of not more than $15 plus assessments which can be less than 60% of the fine imposed.  A violation is not to be used to establish motor vehicle insurance rates.  This offense is "designated as the waste of finite resource currently in short supply and is considered a civil traffic violation."  Note:  The regular sanctions for a speeding offense apply, if a person exceeds a 55 MPH speed limit by more than 65 MPH.  ARIZ § § 12-116.01, 12-116.02 and 28-702.01(A) & (C)

Statutory Speed Limit: 

  • 15 MPH approaching a school crossing
  • 25 MPH in business or residential district
  • 65 MPH on interstate highways outside of urban areas with a population  more than 50,000  
  • 65 MPH (1) for vehicles weighing more than 26,000 lbs. excluding vehicles designed to carry 16 on more persons including the driver or (2) for vehicles drawing a pole trainer weighing more than 6,000 lbs. 

Possible Defenses

In Arizona you may be able to make three possible defenses to speeding:

  • Attacking the officer’s determination of your speed. To do this you must discover what method the officer used to cite you and then learn about the ways to attack that particular method.
  • Claiming an emergency forced you to exceed the speed limit to avoid serious damage or injury to yourself or others.
  • Claiming that the officer mistook your car for another car. With so many similar-looking cars, it is possible that a cop could see a speeding car, lose sight of it around a corner, and then wrongly pick out your car farther down the road. 

Point System

A person, who accumulates 8 points within 12 months, either (1) may have their license suspended for not more than 1 year or (2) may be required to attend a traffic education and training course.  The following points are assessed for speeding and speed related violations:  (1)  For a violation of any provision of § 28-701-2 points; (2) for either reckless driving or racing on the highways-8 points; and, (3) for any other violation-2 points.  AAC § 17-4-506 (via '28-202(A)) &  § 28-3315(A). Learn more about the point system in Arizona.

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