Speed Kills

17 Apr 2017

Speed is one of the main factors in traffic collisions, and accounts for a quarter of all road deaths. This includes both incidents where the speed limit has been exceeded, and driving or riding within the speed limit but too fast for the weather or road conditions.

While high speed crashes are very likely to be fatal, the majority of these deaths and injuries occur on roads with a speed limit of 30 mph or less. In good conditions, the difference in stopping distance between 30 mph and 35 mph is an extra 21 feet, or 2 car lengths, and these distances will double in the wet, and be ten times further in icy conditions. Research shows that 85% of pedestrians are killed when struck by cars at impact speeds below 40mph, 45% at less than 30 mph and 5% at speeds below 20 mph.

Remember that speed limits are a maximum, not a target. Road conditions vary, and you should always adjust your speed to suit.Driving a little bit over the limit or putting your foot down where you probably shouldn’t may not seem as socially unacceptable as, say, drink driving. However, it’s one of the biggest killers on the road and is something that every driver on the road can help improve.

If you’re a passenger, and you feel uncomfortable with the speed you are travelling, don’t be afraid to voice your concerns or ask your driver to ease off a little. It may feel awkward, but it could make the difference between arriving safely and being in a collision. We all need to work together to reduce road deaths.

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