While you may know that many drivers routinely violate the speed limit, you may not be fully aware of the risks to you. During the pandemic, less-crowded highways led to more speeding drivers and a dramatic increase in speed-related collisions.
Here’s what you should know about speeding and why it has such a significant impact on your ability to safely get from here to there.
Decreased reaction time
Preventing accidents has a lot to do with reaction times. There will be unpredictable events on the road, and avoiding a collision will depend on the driver’s ability to react quickly and safely.
As speed increases, the driver’s time to see danger and react to it dramatically decreases. For example, a driver may see debris on the road ahead. When driving at greater speed, however, he or she may not have time to choose a safe reaction. The driver may instinctually swerve to avoid the debris without seeing a vehicle in the next lane.
In addition to making a crash more likely, speeding also makes collisions more dangerous. Faster driving compounds the effects of an accident, increasing the likelihood of a fatality.
In a recent study, researchers looked at speed-related crashes. In 2019, 26 percent of fatal crashes were speed-related, leaving over 9,000 people dead in 8,544 crashes.
Maintaining a safe distance from other vehicles and preparing for another driver’s unpredictable reactions are two ways you can avoid the dangers of speeding drivers.