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Speeding – Leading Cause of Auto Accidents

Speeding Endangers Everyone

Speeding endangers everyone on the road and is the leading cause of automobile accidents. In the United States, speeding contributes to 26% of fatalities in car crashes annually. Additionally, high-speed crashes often result in devastating injuries that impact the lives of those injured and their families. These impacts are often life-altering and long-term.

Unexpected encounters with other vehicles, objects, or pedestrians in the roadway occur often. A speeding driver is more likely to cause an accident simply because of the short reaction time and the inability to maneuver quickly enough. The faster a vehicle travels, the harder the impact is in a crash. This is why high-speed auto accidents result in more severe injuries and property damage.

In plain terms, speeding is dangerous. When a driver is speeding, it endangers the speeder and everyone around them on the roadway. This includes other drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, and law enforcement officers.

In a car accident lawsuit, speeding is classified as negligence when the result is an accident injuring others or death occurs. A negligent driver can be financially liable for that person’s injuries and other losses.

All drivers have a responsibility to drive at a reasonable speed. Speed limits provide boundaries, but drivers should also consider existing traffic, road conditions, weather, and visibility when determining an acceptable speed. In certain circumstances, a driver can be found negligent, even when driving as the speed limit.

“Speeding becomes an increasingly important factor for drivers involved in fatal crashes as roadway surface conditions deteriorate. In 2020, speeding was a factor in fatal crashes for:

  • 19% of drivers on dry roads
  • 21% on wet roads
  • 33% on roads with snow or slush
  • 45% on roads with moving or standing water
  • 42% on roads with mud, dirt, or gravel
  • 42% on roads with ice or frost

One of the reasons a driver may be cited by police for speeding is for “driving too fast for conditions.” While driving at the posted speed limit on a dry road may be considered safe, driving at that same speed when the road is wet or covered with snow or ice may be considered unsafe or “too fast for conditions.” 

Source: NSC Injury Facts

Consequences of Speeding

Speeding is more than just breaking the law and being a negligent driver. The consequences are far-ranging:

  • Greater potential for loss of vehicle control
  • Reduced effectiveness of occupant safety equipment such as seat belts and airbags
  • longer distance required to stop a vehicle after the driver perceives a danger
  • Increased severity of a crash leading to more severe injuries and death
  • Increased fuel consumption, impacting costs to drive

Speed Reminders for All Drivers

  • Always obey the speed limit. Speed limits protect all – drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.
  • Practice patience. Do not drive aggressively.
  • Be mindful of your speed in school zones and residential neighborhoods.
  • Be mindful of road conditions and weather. Even if you obey the speed limit, these conditions require you to adjust accordingly for your own safety and the safety of others.

But what if I’m obeying the limit, but others aren’t?

If you encounter a speeding or aggressive driver on the road, the way you respond is can help the situation. Here are some useful tips for dealing with speeders.

  • If you are driving in the left lane and someone speeds up behind you, simply move over and let them pass.
  • Speeding drivers can easily lose control of their vehicles. You don’t want to be in the way. Give them their space.
  • Use your judgment. Don’t engage in risky driving simply because a speeder is tailgating you or trying to provoke you.
  • If you feel you are being harassed or followed, call the police to report the driver. Be prepared to give their tag number.

Speeding Accident Statistics

Speeding Accident Victims Should Seek Immediate Help from a Personal Injury Lawyer

If you or a family member is an automobile accident victim, you should speak with an attorney immediately. If the crash can be attributed to the negligent action of a driver speeding, the injured victim(s) may seek compensation. In many of these car accident cases, it is also possible to seek compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages due to the injuries inflicted in the crash.

Every accident is different. The only way to know if you have a case or how best to proceed is to consult with an experienced attorney.   Jeremiah Jaspon has recovered millions for his clients in car accident cases and can help you too.

Call our office at (407) 513-9515 or email us to discuss your case.