Why Speeding in a Motor Vehicle is so Dangerous

Speeding is a risky driving behavior. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, about 9,380 people were killed because of motorist speeding. The NHTSA says speeding has been a factor in about one-third of all motor vehicle deaths for over two decades.

We all know speeding is dangerous, but here is a closer look at how it affects driving ability:

  • Speeding makes it more difficult to control the vehicle
  • It increases the distance and amount of time it takes to slow down to a stop
  • An impact will be more catastrophic and cause greater damage the faster the vehicle is going
  • Speeding reduces the effectiveness of seat belts and other safety equipment
  • The motorist has much less time to assess an unexpected situation and react

Speeding means that an accident is more likely to be fatal. A driver who speeds may also be more likely to engage in risky behaviors like not wearing a seatbelt. In such a scenario – a high speed collision with an unrestrained driver – the outcome can easily be fatal.

There are many reasons a motorist may speed. It’s not always sinister or malicious intent. Motorists may be tempted if they are running late, in a bad mood, having a bad day, or thinking they can make up time after being stuck in traffic. Some people will speed because of the anonymity offered by being inside a vehicle – other motorists don’t know who you are and likely won’t ever cross paths with you again. None of these things make it right or okay, but it does seem clear that some motorists will always speed regardless of the potential consequences.

There are some things you can do to protect yourself from speeding motorists. First, allow people to pass who want to pass. Stay to the right lane unless you are passing. This gets you out of the way of most speeding drivers. Next, distance yourself from speeding drivers. If they lose control, you don’t want to be nearby. If you are being tailgated, don’t get angry or escalate the situation. Instead, safely change lanes to let them pass and move on.

If you have been injured in a traffic accident involving a reckless driver, search our directory for an experienced traffic accident attorney near you.