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Study Shows Higher Speeds Claim More Lives

Goldstein Heslop Steele Clapper Oswalt & Smith Dec. 12, 2021

According to a report by a think tank which researches issues related to traffic safety, while higher speed limits might be a nice convenience for Pennsylvania drivers, they come at a price. The group’s report suggested that, over the last 25 years 37,000 people lost their lives because lawmakers have been increasing speed limits on roads and highways. For instance, in Pennsylvania, while the highway speed limit was 55 miles per hour in bygone years, the state is opening more stretches of the highways to speed limits of 70 miles per hour.

The study suggested that, in just 2017 alone, over 1,900 people died because of this trend toward permitting higher speeds on the roads. On the whole, the study concluded that for every five miles per hour by which officials raise a speed limit, the rate of highway deaths increases by 8 percent and the rate of deaths on streets increases by 3 percent.

The authors of the study suggested that speeding ranks up with texting and driving and drugged driving as a significant traffic safety issue. Indeed, any speeding vehicle, especially a large truck, takes additional time and distance to stop, sometimes to the tune of hundreds of yards. Moreover, at high speeds, the momentum of a large truck will almost inevitably cause massive damage to whatever it hits.

This is why many truck accidents involving speeding truck drivers end with the victim suffering a serious and catastrophic injury, or even death. Just because there are higher speed limits nowadays, it does not mean truck drivers are allowed to drive negligently or recklessly. Those drivers who cause accidents because they are travelling too fast to operate their trucks safely may be held accountable for any accidents they cause.