Is There Such Thing As Being Charged With Driving Too Slowly?
Driving Too Fast Is Well Known As Unlawful. Driving Too Slowly Is Also Unlawful As Doing So May Unnecessarily Impede Traffic Flow and Cause Dangerous Hazards.
Understanding the Charge of Driving Too Slowly Including the Applicable Penalties
It may be quite surprising; however, it is true that driving too slowly may be unlawful. Additionally, driving too slowly can present as a dangerous safety hazard and indeed there are examples of where an unexpected and unusually slow vehicle caused a tragic accident. Driving too slowly can be similarly as dangerous as driving at excessive speed. Of course, safe and cautious driving is always strongly encouraged; however, unnecessarily slow driving, and becoming an obstacle to other traffic, or possibly frustrating other drivers so severely as to trigger erratic conduct, can pose significant danger.
Driving too slowly may be an offence contrary to the Highway Traffic Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. H.8 which states:
132 (1) No motor vehicle shall be driven on a highway at such a slow rate of speed as to impede or block the normal and reasonable movement of traffic thereon except when the slow rate of speed is necessary for safe operation having regard to all the circumstances.
Interestingly, violation of section 132 of the Highway Traffic Act was recently referenced as an unlawful means within the civil law case of Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association v. Boak, 2022 ONSC 1001, involving the tort of intentional inference in economic relations as arising from rolling roadblocks or blockades.
Like driving too fast, a driver who is driving too slowly also poses serious risks to other drivers whereas traffic that is moving at a normal and anticipated speed may be surprised by an unexpectedly slow moving vehicle resulting in the need for sudden braking or sudden swerving and thereby posing as a highly dangerous situation. Although driving too fast is much more common, the concern for driving too slow also exists.