How Dangerous is Speeding, Really?
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) considers a crash to be speed-related if the driver is either charged with speeding or the responding police officer believes the driver was driving too fast at the time of the crash.
In 2015, nearly ten thousand people across the country lost their lives in speeding-related crashes, and excessive speed was a contributing factor in 27% of all fatal wrecks nationwide.
Despite safety improvements and increased awareness, thousands of Americans still lose their lives every year in crashes that could be prevented simply by slowing down.
Data from the NHTSA shows that crashes on roadways with high speed limits (65 mph or more) are two times as likely to be fatal compared to roads with a speed limit between 45 and 50 mph, and 5x as likely compared to roads with a speed limit below 40 mph.
Speeding is particularly dangerous because it affects our ability to control our vehicle in a number of ways, such as:
- Reducing your ability to avoid obstacles and negotiate curves
- Reducing your ability to stop
- Increasing the distance your vehicle moves as you react to danger
- Decreasing your ability to judge distances between other drivers, pedestrians and obstacles
Posted speed limits aren’t there to serve as guidelines or warnings—the number you see on that black and white sign is meant to keep you and those around you safe.
Slow down, stay focused, and stay safe.