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Stop speeding before it stops you | Transportation

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Stop speeding before it stops you
 Stop speeding before it stops you

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 13,000 lives were lost across America in speeding-related traffic crashes during 2005.

NHTSA considers a crash to be speeding-related if the driver was charged with a speeding-related offense, or if the responding officer indicates that the driver was driving too fast for conditions at the time or was exceeding the posted speed limit.  In 2005, speeding was a contributing factor in 30 percent of all fatal crashes nationally.

“Even one life lost to speeding is one too many,” said Lt. Terry Hastings.  “That’s why the Little Rock Police Department is joining NHTSA and other state and local law enforcement and highway safety leaders all across the nation to remind all drivers to Stop Speeding Before It Stops You.”

Nationally in 2005, 86 percent of all speeding-related traffic fatalities occurred on non-Interstate roadways -- where the posted speed limits were 55 miles per hour or less. According to NHTSA, a crash on a road with a speed limit of 65 mph or greater is more than twice as likely to result in a fatality than a crash on a road with a speed limit of 45 or 50 mph and nearly five times as likely as a crash on a road with a speed limit of 40 mph or below. Only 14 percent of the nation’s speeding-related fatalities occurred on Interstate highways that year.

“Too many lives are lost each year in speeding-related crashes, and we are determined to change that” said Lt. Hastings.  “We are reminding drivers to stay alert, to watch for and obey all posted speed limits, especially in residential areas, school zones, and shopping areas.

“Driving above the posted speed limit or speeding in bad weather conditions dramatically increases the probability that a motorist will be involved in a crash,” said [Local Official].  “Any time a driver speeds, he or she is putting themselves, their passengers, and other drivers and pedestrians at risk.”  

In 2005, speeding was a factor in 28 percent of all fatal crashes on dry roads, and in 33 percent of those occurring on wet roads. Speeding greatly reduces the driver’s ability to slow a vehicle when necessary or to steer safely around an unexpected curve, another vehicle or hazardous object in the roadway. In school zones or neighborhoods, that can include a child or an animal running across the road.

Among drivers involved in fatal crashes, young males are the most likely to have been found speeding. In fact, during 2005, 38 percent of male drivers ages 15-20 who were involved in a fatal crash were speeding at the time of the crash.

Speeding motorcyclists are also over represented in crashes. In 2005, 34 percent of all motorcyclists involved in fatal crashes were speeding at the time of crash, compared to 22 percent for passenger car drivers, 18 percent for light-truck drivers and 7 percent for large-truck drivers.

“Our goal is to save lives,” said Lt. Hastings “Drivers need to remember that there is a reason posted speed limits exist. The roadways can be a dangerous place and the speed limits are designed to protect everyone – drivers, passengers, pedestrians – everyone! The next time you get behind the wheel, please remember to Stop Speeding Before It Stops You.

For more information please visit http://trafficsafetymarketing.gov/.