Most motorists are aware of the immense dangers that are involved in driving at excessive speeds, but few of them are actually responsible and diligent about always following posted speed limits. Those are the findings of a new study recently released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
According to the study, approximately 91% of motorists agree with the statement that all motorists are required to obey speed limits, because it is the law. Further, and more encouragingly, approximately half of the drivers in the survey also believed that it was very important to help reduce speeding on roads. As many as four out of five persons admitted that driving at safe speeds helped avoid accidents.
However, that knowledge did not necessarily translate into good driving practices. In the same survey, more than 25% of motorists also admitted that they often drove at excessive speeds, and found nothing wrong with skilled drivers driving fast. Other motorists admitted that they often drove at high speeds without thinking, and enjoyed doing so.
Young male drivers were much more likely than female drivers to admit to such speed-related practices. What is even more worrisome is the fact that younger drivers are much more likely to drive at high speeds. Drivers in the age group of 16 and 20 admitted to driving at excessive speeds more frequently than any other age group. In fact, in this age-category speeding was a major factor in accidents.
About 11% of the motorists in this category admitted to having been in at least one accident caused by speeding over the past five years. In the general population, the rate of being involved in a speeding-related accident was just 4%.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that every year more than 10,000 people lose their lives in speeding-related accidents. Speeding as an accident factor however, is simply not given the attention it deserves by federal agencies. For years, intoxicated driving dominated the priority list at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and over the past five years or so, distracted driving has taken over. While the Department of Transportation dedicated immense resources to increase awareness about the dangers of cell phone use and driving, many motorists continue to believe that it is safe to drive excessive speeds if they are skilled and experienced motorists. Speeding has nothing to do with your experience levels. Even highly experienced drivers can lose control of a car that is traveling 100 mph, with devastating consequences.
Drive at safe speeds, and stick to speed limits on the road. Also, modify your speed according to the weather, road and traffic conditions.
The Indiana personal injury lawyers of Montross Miller Muller Mendelson Kennedy LLP represent persons injured in car accidents across Indiana.