Frequently Asked Questions

As a Traffic Officer for the Springfield Police Department, I get asked many of the same questions over and over. I thought I could reach more people by answering some of the questions online.

One of the main duties of a Springfield Traffic Officer is to educate Springfield drivers on proper driving procedures. If you have a traffic question that you didn’t see answered here, please e-mail me and I’ll respond as soon as possible.

  1. There are signs that tell you how fast you can go, but what about how slow you can go? In Springfield, unless there is a speed sign telling you how fast you can go, the speed limit is 30 mph. Along the highways the speed limit is 60-70 mph (depending on location) with a minimum speed of 40 mph. Whatever speed is indicated on the sign is the maximum speed you can go. However, there is another city ordinance and state statute, that states: every person operating a motor vehicle shall operate the vehicle in a careful and prudent manner, exercising the highest degree of care, and shall operate the motor vehicle at a rate of speed so as not to endanger the property of another or the life or limb of any person. Basically what this means, it is prudent to slow down even below the minimum speed to be able to control your vehicle. This is especially important on rain and ice-covered roads. You should know that you could still be issued a summons for speed greater than reasonable and prudent even if you are below the speed limit.
  2. Is it illegal to drive a vehicle in Missouri without wearing your shoes? No, but I don’t recommend not wearing your shoes. You will get better traction with shoes. If you are in an accident, the shoes will help keep your feet from getting cut by flying glass.
  3. Do I have to turn my windshield wipers on if it is raining even if I can see okay without them? Yes. Please read this tip for additional comments on wipers and headlights.
  4. If making a left turn from a one-way street, what lane should I be in to make the turn? You must be in the left lane in order to make the turn. If you are in the right lane and make a left turn from that lane, you can be issued a summons for improper left turn. If you cause an accident or are involved in an accident, you will be issued a summons.
  5. If making a right turn on red, who has the right-of-way, me or the vehicle in the left turn lane across the intersection? After coming to a complete stop on red, you are allowed to make a right turn, if it is safe to do so. However, you must yield to the vehicle making the left turn. 

Be safe and buckle up.


Traffic Safety Tip Index