Speeders Support Greater Enforcement of Speed Laws


According to federal data, speeding is responsible for one-third of all traffic fatalities on US roads. The National Survey of Speeding Attitudes and Behavior, an annual survey conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), revealed that many Americans hold inconsistent views about speeding.

David Strickland, the NHTSA administrator, reflected on the survey results and observed that “motorists who drive at excessive speeds put themselves and others at an increased risk of being involved in a crash and possibly of being injured or killed.”

Survey Reveals Paradoxical Norms and Attitudes about Speeding

Although nearly 25 percent of people surveyed admitted to speeding, more than 90 percent expressed a desire for everyone to obey speed limits. The survey results suggest that American drivers want others to avoid speeding but are not quite so willing to stop speeding themselves.

Nearly half of people surveyed believe that more measures should be taken to ensure compliance with speed limits and reduce speeding on roadways. However, respondents differed on the types of measures that they would support. Two-thirds of people surveyed indicated that they want more frequent ticketing for speeding. However, only 41 percent of respondents want higher fines for speeders, suggesting an uneasy relationship between safety concerns and financial considerations.

An optimistic view of the survey results is that the heightened and more visible presence of traffic law enforcement on roadways has led to changing attitudes regarding speeding. Since 1997, the first year in which the annual NHTSA survey was conducted, the percentage of people who admit to enjoying the feeling of driving fast has dipped from 40 percent to just 27 percent.

Unfortunately, speeding remains a significant problem for thrill-seeking younger drivers. The survey found that 11 percent of drivers between the ages of 16 and 20 have been involved in a speeding-related crash during the previous five years. This number is all the more alarming when one considers that many of these drivers have not been able to drive for the entire five-year period.

According to federal data, speeding was a factor in motor vehicle crashes that killed more than 120,000 people in the US in the past decade. Nonetheless, opponents of those calling for an increased focus on the dangers of speeding argue that high speeds obscure more prevalent causes of car crashes. Drunk driving (DUI/DWI), distracted driving, and even mechanical defects, they say, are more likely to cause fatal car accidents.

Regardless of the cause, a motor vehicle accident can result in serious injuries and possibly even death. If you or a loved one has been involved in a car crash in New York, do not hesitate to contact the experienced traffic defense and personal injury lawyers at the Law Office of James E. Tyner, PLLC. Call 866-642-3807 for your free consultation.