Whether it’s a reckless driver on the highway or a teenager rushing to get to school, speeding can have devastating effects. Every year, thousands of people in the United States suffer serious injuries or lose their lives due to drivers who exceed speed limits. Speeding reduces a driver’s reaction time and increases the severity of any resulting collision.
At Kreger Brodish LLP, we know that speeding car accidents can be life-changing events that cause physical, emotional, and financial damage. We have seen the devastating consequences of speeding, from minor injuries to permanent disabilities and even death. If you have been involved in a car accident caused by speeding, our experienced personal injury lawyers are here to help. Contact our office to get started with a free consultation.
Recent Speeding Statistics Related to Fatal Car Accidents
More than 1,500 people were killed in car crashes in North Carolina in one recent year, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Nearly 500 of those deaths were speeding-related fatalities, making North Carolina fourth in speeding-related deaths among all states. Speeding-related fatalities accounted for 32 percent of all traffic deaths in North Carolina that year. Nearly 40 percent of drivers involved in fatal speeding-related crashes that year were alcohol-impaired.
In addition to the human toll, speeding-related car accidents have a significant financial impact. According to the NHTSA, speeding-related crashes in the U.S. in a recent year cost approximately $46 billion. This includes medical expenses, lost productivity, and property damage.
Top Contributing Factors in Speeding Crashes
Various factors contribute to speeding-related car accidents nationwide. According to the NHTSA, some of the most common factors that lead to speeding include the following:
- Traffic – Some drivers become aggressive and impatient when traffic is congested and respond by speeding.
- Running late – Drivers who are in a rush to get to work, school, meetings, or other appointments may speed up.
- Anonymity – Some motorists feel emboldened by the anonymity that being in their vehicles provides. They engage in aggressive driving behaviors like speeding because they believe they won’t be seen or caught.
- Disregard for others and the law – Some motorists speed and drive aggressively because they are careless or unconcerned with the safety of other road users.
Common Injuries Associated with Speeding Accidents
Speeding accidents can have devastating consequences and life-changing injuries for those involved. These accidents can result in a wide range of injuries, including the following:
- Amputations and loss of limb
- Concussions and other traumatic brain injuries (TBIs)
- Spinal cord injuries and paralysis
- Broken bones
- Lacerations, cuts, and bruises
- Internal bleeding
- Burns and road rash
- Crush injuries
- Facial injuries and dental trauma
- Emotional trauma, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
At What Speed Do Car Accidents Occur?
Most studies show that the faster a vehicle travels, the greater the probability of a crash. Motorists traveling at higher speeds have less time to process their surroundings and react to hazardous situations. A speeding vehicle also requires a longer braking distance. The crash rate significantly increases for a single vehicle traveling faster than other motorists on the road.
Speed especially plays a crucial role in the probability that a pedestrian struck by a vehicle will suffer fatal injuries. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety reports that the average risk of severe injury for a pedestrian struck by a vehicle reaches 10 percent at an impact speed of 16 miles per hour (mph) and increases to 90 percent at 46 mph. The average risk of death for a pedestrian struck by a car is 10 percent at an impact speed of 23 mph, increasing to 90 percent at 58 mph.
The risk of severe injury or death is heightened for older pedestrians, even if they are hit at lower speeds. For instance, the average risk of severe injury or death for a 70-year-old pedestrian struck by a car traveling 25 mph is similar to that of a 30-year-old pedestrian struck at 35 mph.
How Many Deaths Are Caused by Speeding in the US?
Speeding was a factor in nearly 30 percent of all traffic fatalities nationwide in a recent year, killing more than 11,000 people, according to the National Safety Council (NSC). That’s an average of more than 30 people per day. The NHTSA reports that speeding has been a factor in nearly one-third of all fatal motor vehicle accidents nationwide for over two decades.
Which Age Group Is Most Likely to Speed?
Research shows that some drivers are more likely to speed than others. According to the NSC, the proportion of male drivers speeding at the time of fatal crashes was higher than the proportion of female drivers across all age groups in one recent year. Young male drivers in the 15-20 age group were the most likely to be speeding at the time of fatal crashes, followed by male drivers in the 21-24 age group. At least 32 percent of male drivers in these age groups involved in deadly crashes were speeding at the time of the accidents, the NSC reports.
How Many Accidents Are Caused by Speeding?
Recent statistics from the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) illustrate how prevalent and deadly speeding accidents are. There were more than 18,000 crashes statewide where speed was a factor in a recent year, accounting for nearly 7 percent of all crashes that year. These accidents resulted in over 400 speeding-related fatalities, making up roughly one-quarter of all traffic fatalities.
Contact a Speeding Accident Lawyer Today
At Kreger Brodish LLP, we understand how devastating a speeding accident can be and are committed to advocating for your rights. If you were involved in a car accident caused by a speeding driver, let us use our knowledge and experience to help you pursue the compensation you need. Our team is ready to seek the justice you deserve so you can move forward with your life. Contact a speeding accident lawyer with Kreger Brodish LLP today for a free initial consultation.