The Barnes Firm

Higher Speed Limits Often Cause More Crashes

When investigating a crash, law enforcement officers often take your speed into account. For years, police have connected high speeds to serious, often deadly crashes. Despite being a common crash-factor, many governments have upped the limits on highways and roads.

A new study conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) now blames the higher speed limits for causing more deadly crashes. In 2013 for example, researchers pinned 1900 deaths on higher speed limits. They say those deadly crashes basically cancel out the number of lives saved by airbags that year.

A car crash attorney with The Barnes Firm says speed is one of the most common factors that can lead to collision.

“Speeding is a factor in about a third of all the crashes,” car accident attorney John Sheehan said. “As personal injury attorneys, we read a lot of crash reports and it’s heartbreaking to see so many people get injured because a negligent driver wouldn’t slow down.”

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimated the total economic cost of speed-related crashes to be over $40 billion each year. The government agency says roughly 13,000 people were killed last year in speed-related crashes.

Despite the evidence that speed kills, many states and cities have recently upped the speed limits.

“Speed limits now range from 5 miles per hour to 80 miles per hour in some states,” Sheehan said. “And the limits are constantly changing.”

Since 2005, more than a dozen states have increased speed limits.

Decades ago, the term “Drive 55” was synonymous with highway travel but most highways today top out at 70 or 75 mph and some routes have hit 85 mph.

According to the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, the trend is often caused by peer pressure: when one state ups its speed, its neighbors usually follow.

While many states are upping the highway speeds, many city leaders are voting to lower speed limits.

New York, Santa Monica and Malibu have all recently lowered speed limits – and government officials say the move is already showing positive results.

If you’ve been injured by a speeding driver, the car accident lawyers at The Barnes Firm have decades of experience helping victims get the best results possible. Contact a lawyer today for a free case evaluation.

The Barnes Firm 1-(800) 800-0000

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