As Americans hit the road this summer, traveling hundreds to thousands of miles to reach their favorite vacation spots, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has released a report showing just how dangerous trying to get to your destination too fast can be.
According to the NTSB, speeding results in approximately as many fatalities as drunk driving does. The NTSB says that almost a third of traffic deaths in recent years involved someone either driving faster than the posted speed limit or than was safe for current conditions.
Another federal agency, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), found that 112,580 people died in crashes involving speeding between 2005 and 2014. While speeding-related crashes and fatalities declined during that decade, fatalities were on the rise again in the past two years.
How Speeding Increases Chances of a Crash and Severity of Injuries
The acting chairman of the NTSB, Robert Sumwalt, says that speeding makes the chances of getting into a crash more likely because it reduces the amount of time that a person has to react to an unexpected situation on the road. Further, the faster you're going, the longer distance you need to stop. He also notes, "In a crash that's speeding-related, you're more likely to be injured, your injuries are more likely to be severe, and you're more likely to die."
Sumwalt also says, "Unlike other crash factors such as alcohol impairment or unbelted occupants, speeding has few negative social consequences associated with it, and does not have a leader campaigning to increase public awareness about the issue at the national level."
Cameras Can Reduce Speeding, But There Aren't Enough of Them
The NTSB is hoping that this latest report will help call attention to the dangers of speeding and incentivize states to take action. One deterrent to speeding, according to the study, is the use of automated cameras that capture speeding vehicles even when no law enforcement officers are around. However, these cameras are only in use in 14 states currently.
Part of an accident investigation to determine whether a driver should be cited or charged with a crime involves gauging approximately how fast the drivers were traveling when the crash occurred. If you are struck by a speeding driver, having evidence that he or she was speeding can help you in any civil legal action that you take against the at-fault driver. An attorney experienced in helping car accident victims can ensure that you obtain all of the evidence necessary to build a personal injury case.
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