Articles Tagged with Speeding related accidents

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Summer is peak travel season in Atlanta, and also, unfortunately, one of the more accident – prone times of the year. Did you know that your accident risk spikes significantly over the next few weeks because of the following five factors?

Speeding is a major cause of accidents during summer. People travel more during summer, and unfortunately many of them underestimate travel times and leave their homes far too late to reach their destinations on time, which explains why so many drivers speeds on Atlanta streets during summer. Leave your home with plenty of time to reach your destination to avoid the need to rush and drive at high speeds.

Congested roads are a common scene during summer. You are sharing the roads with a greater number of motorists than during other times of the year, and this is something that you must factor in when you make your travel plans. Expect traffic jams and delays, and leave home with plenty of time to spare. With more vehicles on the road, the chances of an accident are exponentially greater.

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Concerned at the increase in the number of auto accidents caused by speeding motorists, a coalition of safety groups has launched two new pilot projects in two separate states aimed at designing strategies to prevent these devastating crashes.

The coalition consisting of the Governors Highway Safety Association, the National Safety Foundation and the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety are funding two  separate pilot projects to study ways to reduce the impact of high speeds on motorist safety.  The two states are being granted $100,000 each to design and develop speed management strategies to prevent these crashes. The programs are meant to focus on a combination of engineering design and enhancements and  infrastructure improvements, as well as other proven methods of reducing speeding- related accidents, including education and awareness as well as public outreach. One state is expected to implement the program in a rural setting, while the other will implement the program in an urban area. The goal of the initiative is to design appropriate speed management strategies that can help reduce the impact of speed on highway safety.

Speed has always been a harmful factor in car accidents in the metro Atlanta region.  Unfortunately, over the past year, the role of speeding related car accidents that resulted in fatalities has actually increased. Approximately, nine thousand people die annually in accidents caused directly by speeding motorists. Those numbers increased in 2020 when lower traffic volumes led to an increase in the number of motorists driving at excessive speeds, leading to a spike in the number of related accident deaths recorded last year.  Speeding related accidents and their resulting injuries disproportionately affect teenage drivers more due to their relative lack of skill and maturity behind the wheel.

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Teens account for a greater proportion of all speeding-related accident deaths in the United States, compared to all other age groups. Those disturbing facts come from a new report by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, which analyzed data between 2015 and 2019.

The report found that teen motorists, as well as their passengers between the ages of 16 and 19, accounted for a much higher proportion of accident deaths that were caused by speeding, with 43% of deaths occurring in this age group. In all other age groups, speeding accounted for approximately 30% of all deaths during the same time period.

According to the report, there were a total of 4,930 fatalities in accidents that were caused by speeding, between 2015 and 2019.  During this time, there were 15,510 teen driver and passenger accident deaths, and more than 5,200 of those occurred in accidents that were caused by speeding.

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Lately, there have been quite a few news stories of people driving on the roads with excessive speed.  While most people are currently under shelter-in-place orders, this means that there are fewer cars on the road and less traffic to navigate.  In fact, pictures have been circulating widely of empty roadways in the usually most traffic congested cities.  This has resulted in some drivers taking advantage of the empty streets and pushing the envelope on speed limits.

In the metro-Atlanta area, this behavior has been seen both on the local streets in town as well as the area’s highways.   Some drivers are not only engaging in excessive speeding, but there are others that are actually racing on the streets.

This driving at excessive speeds has caused deadly accidents with devastating results.  Most recently in Atlanta, an 11 year-old child was struck and killed by a speeding driver, and a police officer was also killed in a deadly high speed accident.

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According to the National Transportation Safety Board, speeding motorists pose a serious problem on our roads. Between 2005 and 2016, speeding-related accidents killed more than 132,500 people.  In Georgia, the annual number of deaths caused by speeding drivers in 2008 to 2017 averaged from 1200 to over 1500 each year.  Until authorities and communities address the very real risks and dangers posed by speeding, no real progress can be made in reducing the number of accident fatalities in the United States.

There are two ways in which speeding increases the risk of fatalities.  First, a speeding motorist is less likely to be able to respond in time to prevent an accident.  Second, the kinds of injuries that occur in a speeding-related accident are very often fatal, due to the very severe impact caused by the speeding vehicle involved. In fact, the National Transportation Safety Board statistics show that speeding-related fatalities accounted for approximately one-third of all traffic deaths. That number was close to the number of people who died in drunk driving accidents during that same period. However, while a lot of attention and activism is directed towards drunk driving, speeding generally does not get as much focus as an accident causing factor.

The National Transportation Safety Board identifies the recent trend in communities to raise speed limits as one of the reasons why speeding continues to claim so many lives every year.  It is a no-brainer that higher speed limits only encourage drivers to drive even faster.  In 2015, the maximum speed limit on Georgia highways was raised from 65 mph to 70 mph.  Georgia is also one of the few states that has anti-speed trap laws.

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