Drunk driving and distracted driving get much of the media’s attention. This is for good reason: they cause a large number of auto accidents and result in the death of thousands of people—more than one third of all auto accident fatalities, combined—each year.
But there’s another culprit that costs thousands of lives that doesn’t often make the news: speeding.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that speeding-related car accidents killed 10,219 people in 2012—nearly the same number of people killed in drunk driving crashes. Speeding is the cause of one third of all auto accident-related deaths.
In Alabama, 272 people were killed in crashes caused by speeding in 2012.
For many, speed limits are seen more as general guidelines than actual rules. Tickets for speeding are so commonplace that they are considered a nuisance—a fact of life—and not something that should elicit shame or a change in behavior.
However, speed limits are vital. They are set in order to keep drivers safe and are based on road and traffic conditions. Driving 5, 10, 15 miles per hour over the speed limit isn’t acceptable: it can be deadly.
The faster a driver is going, the less time he or she has to react to obstacles, other vehicles, and changes in road conditions.
Speed can also cause a driver to lose control when driving conditions are less than optimal: speed was a contributing factor in many of the fatal crashes that occurred on wet roads (23 percent), snowy roads (36 percent), and icy roads (44 percent) in 2012. Of the fatal crashes that occurred in construction zones, speeding was attributed as the cause in 35 percent. Even on clear, sunny days, speeding can result in a fatal accident. In 2012, speeding was a factor in 20 percent of fatal crashes on dry roads.
The bottom line is that speeding is dangerous.
If you have been injured in a car accident caused by a speeding driver, you should know that you have options.
You can hold the driver responsible for his or her negligent behavior. Compensation from a personal injury claim can help you pay the costs associated with your injuries: medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more.
If you have questions, please contact Martinson & Beason, P.C. today for a free consultation with an experienced car accident lawyer. We’ll let you know your options and give you the guidance you need moving forward.