Motor vehicle accidents involving speeding drivers killed 9,378 people in Florida and around the country in 2018, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Excessive speed increases stopping distances, makes vehicles more difficult to control in emergency situations, and reduces the effectiveness of airbags and seat belts, and it is a factor in about one in three fatal car accidents in the United States. Drivers speed up in order to make up lost time or to reach their destinations sooner, but placing other road users in danger by exceeding posted speed limits rarely saves them more than a few minutes.
Speeding in urban areas
The timing of traffic lights in cities and large towns is carefully coordinated to reduce congestion, to improve traffic flow, and to deter speeding. Motorists who drive at safe speeds will encounter mainly green lights when traffic is light, but the signals are timed to ensure that speeding drivers face a series of red lights. Even when speeding drivers manage to avoid red lights, they do not save much time. A 10-mile journey takes a little over 17 minutes to complete at 35 miles per hour. Driving at 45 miles per hour instead of 35 miles per hour would reduce this travel time by less than four minutes.
Speeding on highways
Exceeding the posted speed limit on highways makes even less sense. This is because the amount of time saved by driving faster is reduced as speeds increase. Driving 75 miles per hour instead of 65 miles per hour for 10 miles only saves one minute and 14 seconds, and increasing the speed to 85 miles per hour only reduces the journey time by another 56 seconds. Speeding drivers also pay a high price at the gas pump because fuel consumption increases significantly at speeds higher than 55 miles per hour.
Holding speeding drivers accountable
Drivers who cause accidents because they exceed posted speed limits can face both civil and criminal sanctions. When accident reports reveal that motorists were speeding or otherwise driving recklessly when they crashed, experienced personal injury attorneys could use this information to establish negligence in lawsuits brought on behalf of road users who suffered injury, loss, or damage.