The Connection Between Speeding and Fatal Accidents
Speeding is one of the most widespread issues on American roads, and efforts to decrease speeding rates have largely been ineffective. Speeding is linked to a wide range of negative outcomes, including fatalities. Understanding the clear link between speeding and traffic fatalities can help drivers make safer choices and put victims in a better position to fight for the compensation they deserve.
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured by a speeding driver, don’t wait any longer to seek compensation for your losses. Call John H. Ruby & Associates at 502-373-8044 to set up a time to talk to our team.
It’s important to understand just how big of a role speeding plays in traffic fatalities. Per the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, speeding led to over 12,000 deaths in 2021. The National Safety Council puts these numbers into context, showing that speeding leads to roughly 33 deaths per day. This is part of a troubling trend, with fatalities increasing three years in a row.
Speeding now accounts for a greater share of traffic fatalities than it has in over a decade. In 2021, speeding was responsible for 29% of fatalities. In general, male drivers are significantly more likely to cause fatal speed-related crashes than females, and the risk tends to decrease as you age.
This may be why the NHTSA has targeted young drivers in a 2023 campaign to discourage them from speeding. These ads targeted drivers aged 18 to 44.
How Speeding Leads to Fatalities
Many drivers just don’t understand why speeding is so dangerous. Is going a few miles an hour over the speed limit really that bad? Everyone is busy nowadays, and speeding to get from task to task has just become a way of life. However, it’s clear that speeding negatively affects driving in numerous ways.
First, speeding makes it harder to react quickly to an obstacle in the road. When there’s an obstacle, you’re forced to react more quickly than you would if you’d been driving slower. Considering that many drivers also engage in distracted, impaired, or fatigued driving, there’s a good chance that a speeding driver will fail to react in time.
Speeding dramatically increases your stopping distance. The faster you go, the more time you need to bring your vehicle to a complete stop. As a result, speeding is linked to rear-end collisions, collisions at intersections, and accidents involving pedestrians.
Speeding also increases the force with which you hit someone in a crash. A slight difference in speed could turn a minor accident into one that causes severe injuries and leaves multiple vehicles totaled.
Across the board, drivers have less control of their vehicles when they are speeding. This worsens when roads are slick, the weather is poor, or other adverse conditions are present.
Consequences of Excessive Speeding
Speeding drivers can be hit with a long list of negative consequences when their unsafe driving finally catches up with them. First, they’re likely to face multiple citations. The faster you’re going, the more likely it is that your license can be seized after just one serious accident. The more you’re speeding, the higher your fines are.
Second, speeding can lead to preventable crashes. Not only do these crashes result in citations and fines, but they also expose a driver to potentially expensive legal risks. If the victims choose to pursue a personal injury claim, the driver’s insurance company could be forced to pay out tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in order to settle the claim. This usually leads to a massive jump in insurance expenses or even the loss of coverage.
Should an accident lead to a fatality, the at-fault driver will likely carry that with them for the rest of their life. Fatalities tear families and communities apart, and no matter how much the driver pays for that mistake, it will likely follow them for the rest of their lives.
Injured by a Speeding Driver? Contact John H. Ruby & Associates Now
Have you been hurt in a speed-related accident? Find out how the team at John H. Ruby & Associates can help you now. Give us a call at 502-373-8044 or connect with us online to set up a consultation now.