We’ve all been there, driving a little faster than the speed limit, and then suddenly, behind us we see those flashing lights. Whether it’s a ticket or a warning, we get the talk. We hand over the license and registration, and we hear what our speed was, what the limit is, and why we were pulled over.
After that, we’ve all had the same thought: why is the speed limit so low in this area? Perhaps some of us have taken it further: why are there speed limits at all?
That’s one of those questions that, at the moment, seems to be very insightful and reasonable, but upon the least amount of reflection, it proves to be incredibly foolish.
After all, we know that faster cars are more likely to get into wrecks. It’s intuitively true. When you drive faster, you have less time to react, and you have less control over your car. We all swear or honk at the sports car zooming through traffic, and we all know the reason is that such driving is more likely to lead to an accident.
The data backs this up. Government research finds that about 31 percent of crashes are due to speeding. In 2007, that led to over 13,000 deaths. Even when speaking less dramatically, and leaving fatal crashes aside, the cost of speeding is immense. It costs people $40 billion every year.
Speeding is such a big issue in crashing, that law firms make a point of representing people who have been the victims of accidents due to the other driver speeding.
So, while that ticket you received may seem unfair, and perhaps that particular street you were on could use a bump of 5 or so miles in the limit, the overall point the officer made was valid. Speeding is dangerous, even if we all do it. A reminder every now and again to watch the speedometer and drive at a reasonable speed is important.
After all, we don’t want to be part of those statistics listed above. We don’t want to be part of the 31%, the 13,000, and we most certainly do not want to be responsible for those statistics either.
While it’s unreasonable to expect anyone reading this to suddenly become an advocate for strictly adhering to speed limits, it’s still worthwhile to give a gentle reminder that limits are not just set to make sure cops can earn revenue for the government through tickets. The limits are set to keep everyone safe, that includes pedestrians and drivers, and it includes you, speeding in your car.
If that leads to just a few readers taking their foot off the gas, just a little mind you, and keeping speeds at least reasonable, then this article has done its job. While it may be fun and sexy to really let go and fly down the street, the consequences are simply too great to do so.
At the very least, the next time you are caught driving like that and you see the lights flashing behind you, you’ll know you deserve what you get.
During the first quarter of 2014, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recorded 6,800 fatal car crashes; this was 4.9% lower than the number during the same quarter in 2013 (7,150 fatalities). Despite the decrease, 6,800 is still pretty high for the simple reason that majority of car accidents, being due to driver error, are preventable, if only drivers will behave responsibly on the road and care more for their own safety and the safety of other motorists.
One law firm, the Bruner Law Firm, specifically, believes that most drivers know how to avoid a car accident. Unfortunately, however, so many of them do not consciously practice safe driving every time they get behind the wheel. With their smart phones and GPS devices within arms reach, their minds are easily distracted. As they try to do many things at once, the primary task of driving safely ends up being very poorly performed.
Distracted driving is another major cause of car accidents which result to thousands of fatalities and another tens of thousands of injuries. Unlike drunk-driving, overspeeding and reckless driving which a responsible driver will never commit, however, any driver, even the most careful ones can be guilty of distracted driving without even realizing it.
In the website of the law firm Williams Kherkher, it is said that driving distractions can be differentiated into three main categories:
- Visual: When a driver takes his or her eyes off the road, they immediately increases their chances of getting into a crash. Visual distractions can include texting and other phone use or even looking at someone else in the car.
- Manual: When a driver takes his or her hands off the wheel, the car is more prone to swerving or sudden adjustments that can result in a collision. Manual distractions can include applying makeup, eating, and drinking.
- Cognitive: Whenever a driver takes his/her mind off of driving, the lack of focus slows down reaction times. Thus, daydreaming or experiencing strong emotions (such as crying or anger) can be dangerous while driving.
Texting while driving and talking with someone over the phone while behind the wheel are, presently, the worst kind of driving distraction. Other kinds include fixing a tie, combing or styling the hair, reading a map for directions, reaching for something, adjusting the radio or any electronic device, playing with a child or a pet while driving, lighting a cigarette and smoking, watching a movie from a laptop, and so forth. While anyone can be guilty of committing this dangerous driving lapse, young drivers, those aged between 18 and 25, are the ones identified to be the guiltiest, especially when it concerns texting or talking on a cell phone while driving.
Regardless of what caused distraction, the result, in the event of a crash, will always include property damage and/or harm to another individual (another motorist or a pedestrian). It is important that victims seek the help of a personal injury lawyer to make sure that all things necessary for a personal injury case to prosper are acquired, that the case is filed properly and all evidences are in order. All these are to enable the victims to merit the compensation they legally deserve.