What Factors May Contribute to Speed-Related Crashes?

On behalf of The Berger Firm Dec. 8, 2020

Is speed the most important thing in a vehicle? If you paid attention to certain car commercials, it might feel like it. Some Kentucky drivers seem to take speeding quite seriously too, using any opportunity to inch further and further above the speed limit.

Speeding drivers are not just engaging in a harmless activity though. Speeding is a dangerous and deadly activity that causes thousands of deaths and many more injuries each and every year. In 2018 alone, speeding drivers caused over 9,000 deaths — more than 25% of all accident fatalities.

Age Is a Factor

Younger drivers are more likely to speed. When looking at the rate of speeding violations for every mile driven, drivers between the ages of 16 and 19 committed three times more violations than drivers over age 30. Males are also more likely to engage in speeding than females.

Drivers are less likely to cause fatal speeding accidents as they get older. Gender plays a role here too though. When looking at male drivers who caused fatal accidents, 19% were speeding. When considering female drivers involved in fatal accidents, only 11% were speeding.

Speed Limits Are on The Rise

Although states set their own speed limits, the national maximum speed limit kept limits to no higher than 55 mph. Lawmakers repealed the national limit back in 1995, and since then speed limits have been trending upward. Although higher speeds are associated with more car accidents and serious injuries, some people are in favor of the higher limits. These advocates tend to believe that speed variation — not just speeding — is the problem.

Speed variation is the difference in vehicle speeds on the same stretch of road. The thought is that it is dangerous to have speeding drivers and drivers following the limit traveling near one another, so it would be better to raise the limit to match the speeding drivers. While this method does cause the drivers who were following the limit to speed up to the new limit, the speeding drivers just drive even faster. When this happens, there is still speed variation but at even higher rates of speed.

Speeding Drivers Are Dangerous

Drivers have to react quickly when they notice an emergency on the road. If a driver is speeding, it will take longer to slow down his or her vehicle, making it difficult to stop in time. A speeding driver is also more likely to lose control of the vehicle if he or she tries to take evasive action to avoid a collision.

Being involved in a car accident with a speeding driver can be a terrifying experience. You may be dealing with severe injuries, medical bills, lost wages, and emotional trauma. Recovering from such an experience can be difficult but not impossible with the right help. You may want to work closely with a knowledgeable and compassionate attorney who is prepared to guide you through the process of filing a personal injury lawsuit.