Q&A - Pushing Me To Go Faster

motorcycleI was on a motorcycle trip a few years ago with a friend , and was riding about 10 km/h faster on a two lane highway and cars were still pushing me to go faster. There was a solid line so no passing as well there were also curves to consider. The shoulder was loose gravel and for me to pull over each time the cars formed a pack behind me I would slow down and pull off to let them go.

My question is how fast should one drive to satisfy the traffic that piles up behind me?

My young friend said I should just keep going as fast as necessary to please the cars behind me!

Am I required by law to pull over if I am doing the speed limit or over by 10 km/h to let the traffic pass?

I don't have a death wish and feel that as long as the traffic signs are posted 10 over is as fast as I will go Period.



I'll start my comment the way I always do when I talk about the speed limit. The limit is as fast as you are legally allowed to travel. Go faster and you may be ticketed and convicted. Doing 10 or even 20 over is not allowed even if the police grant some leeway in their enforcement.

I gather from reading your comment that you are comfortable riding your motorcycle at the speed limit and don't care for the risk when pressured to exceed the limit by other drivers. You don't have to pull over for them, nor should they expect you to as long as you are traveling at a reasonable speed for the circumstances. I've written about this in my article on slow driving. It is up to the other drivers to follow at a safe distance, pass when a safe opportunity presents itself and not exceed the speed limit when doing so.

Your companion is incorrect legally, but probably realises that the risk is minimized when everyone is traveling at approximately the same speed. The trouble is, where does the risk of overdriving your capability exceed the risk of not traveling at the same speed as the pack?

In a perfect world we would all follow the rules when we drive, behave courteously to other road users and try to minimize the cost of collisions that would still occur because regardless of how we see ourselves, we are imperfect.

The reality is almost the opposite. We follow the rules when they suit us, disobey when they don't, and rationalize that it is either not important or it is the government's fault for enacting laws for the sole purpose of extracting money from our pockets. Other road users are mere obstacles in our way to be disregarded or bullied until they make way for us. We refuse to take responsibility for ourselves and our actions.

I'll get down off my soapbox now and finish by saying that you do need to consider your safety and there are good drivers who do their best every time they get behind the wheel. Of course, it is the inconsiderate drivers who make it difficult for the rest of us.

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