South Dakota has two types of speeding laws: “absolute limits” and a “basic speeding law.” This article explains the differences between the two and the consequences of a speeding violation. However, you might also want to find out how about some common defenses to a speeding citation.
There's nothing tricky about how South Dakota’s absolute speed limits work: If the absolute speed limit is 50 miles per hour and you drive faster than that, you’ve violated the law. Unless otherwise posted, South Dakota’s absolute speed limits are:
But as explained below, you can still get a speeding ticket even without exceeding an absolute limit.
Notwithstanding the absolute limits, South Dakota’s basic speeding law prohibits driving at a speed that is “greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions then existing.” In other words, motorists must always drive at a safe speed. What a safe speed is will depend on the circumstances. For instance, 55 miles per hour might be safe on a bright, sunny day. But if it’s dark and the road is icy, going 55 miles per hour could be dangerous and a violation of the basic speeding law.
Speeding is a class 2 misdemeanor in South Dakota. For a violation, the driver will have to pay a fine plus court fees. Generally, the total of these two amounts is:
However, fines for speeding violations in construction zones are doubled. So the total amount the driver pays will be more than that for other speeding offenses.
A speeding ticket typically will not add points to a motorist’s driving record.
Depending on the circumstances, a speeding violation can lead to a “reckless driving” conviction. And if a motorist causes the death of another person while speeding, vehicular homicide charges are possible.