Speeding puts everyone else on the road in danger. Statistics from 2017 show that speeding was responsible for the deaths of 9,717 people and accounted for over a quarter (26 percent) of all roadside deaths that year. There are many frustrations in the modern world due to busy schedules and tight deadlines, but speed limits are there to protect everyone who is sharing the road. It is important that you understand the risks associated with speeding and why traveling faster can ultimately put you in danger.
The Risks of Speeding
For over twenty years, speeding has been the cause of at least one-third of all car crash deaths. Speed can also impact your safety even when traveling at the posted speed limit. However, when you are traveling fast in dangerous road conditions, like inclement weather, a road that is being repaired, being in an area in the evening that is not well lit, and other potential road hazards, you are putting you and other drivers at significant risk of being injured.
When you are speeding, you are not only putting your life at risk but also other drivers and passengers who are on the road with you, including police officials. It is a significant issue that requires a proper solution in order to provide for safer road conditions. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) offers guides and tools in order to spread awareness about safe driving practices, and this includes tips on how to handle an aggressive motorist when you encounter them on the road.
Consequences of Speeding
When you speed, you are doing more than merely breaking the law. There are some far-ranging consequences that should be kept in mind:
- Increased likelihood of losing control of the vehicle;
- Decreased ability of passenger safety equipment;
- Longer distances needed to stop after the driver is aware of danger;
- Greater degrees of crash severity resulting in more severe injuries;
- Economic ramifications of a speed-related accident and
- More costly fuel consumption
What Makes Drivers Speed?
Speeding is included as an aggressive driving behavior due to some key factors. The following situations and concepts have contributed to the increased rate of aggressive driving in the modern world:
- Traffic. Congestion and traffic are the most frequently mentioned contributors that cause drivers to partake in aggressive driving behaviors. Drivers may choose to respond aggressively through their driving patterns causing them to speed, constantly change lanes, or become frustrated when someone they see as getting in the way of their progress.
- Running Late. Some drivers choose to drive aggressively because they perhaps have too much on their plate or they are running late for some prior engagement, such as their job, school, an important meeting, a class, a football game, or some other scheduled event.
- Anonymity. A driver is somewhat insulated from the world around them. They are hidden from their outside environment. This can cause the motorist to create a sense of detachment from those around them, as if they are only an observer rather than an active participant on the road. This can result in people acting in a way as if they can’t suffer consequences from their actions possibly due to the fact they think others cannot see them or they will never encounter these drivers ever again. This can cause drivers to do dangerous things on the road that they would otherwise not do in a normal situation.
- Disregard for Others and For the Law. A majority of drivers do not often driver aggressively, and others may never do so. However, for some, periods of aggressive driving are fairly regular, and for an even small percentage of drivers, it is their normal driving behavior. Occasional episodes of aggressive driving, like speeding and change lanes with little notice, could happen when responding to certain situations. These scenarios could involve a driver who late to an important appointment but not reflecting the normal behavior of the driver.
If you think that there are more cases of aggressive or rude driving behaviors on the road than in the past, you would be correct — if not for any other reason but that there are many more motorists on the road driving further than ever before.
How to Deal with Speeding and Aggressive Drivers
Speeding and other aggressive driving behavior do not only impact the speeder — it also can impact other motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians. Here are some usual tips for what to do when encountering a speeder or aggressive driver on the road:
- If you are traveling in the left lane and another driver is attempting to pass, move over and allow them to pass;
- Give speeding drivers plenty of room. Speeding motorists could more easily lose control of their vehicle;
- Adjust your driving according to your environment. Speeding is linked to aggressive driving. If a speeding motorist is tailgating you or trying to engage in dangerous driving, use judgment to safely guide your vehicle out of the way of harm;
- Contact the police if you think a motorist is following you or harassing you.
Crashes due to Speeding in Salt Lake City
Each day, someone is injured in a terrible vehicle collision. Unfortunately, a majority of these auto accidents are devastating to their victims, often resulting in death. When a victim dies in a car crash, they leave behind families who have to take on the aftermath of the accident, being forced to pay for medical bills and funeral expenses, while sometimes with a loss of income. In some cases, the surviving family can call a qualified wrongful death attorney in Utah to protect their legal rights after a deadly crash.
For over 30 years, the experienced car wreck lawyers in Salt Lake City at Siegfried & Jensen have been helping the residents of Utah get back on their feet after experiencing injuries because of the negligent actions of another driver. We have helped countless families win millions in their accident claims. If you have questions, call us today for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case and see what options we have for you.
Content checked by personal injury attorney Todd Bradford. I worked for a small law firm in Utah County, where I handled various types of cases. My main focus was personal injury and I decided that is what I enjoyed doing the most. I rejoined Siegfried and Jensen in 2012 where my focus is solely on helping personal injury clients. I take pride in helping personal injury clients and enjoy serving them. If you need an attorney for auto accidents or injuries of any kind in Salt Lake City, UT, Ogden, UT, Spokane, WA, or Boise, ID, contact us.