(ARA) - Despite statistics showing that excessive speed is a factor in a third of all fatal crashes, a recent survey by Farmers Insurance Group shows that 69.2 percent of respondents admitted to exceeding the posted speed limit on the highway. In addition, 36 percent said they regularly exceed the posted speed limit by five or more miles per hour, and 22 percent said they repeatedly drive 10 or more miles per hour over the speed limit. “Speeding reduces the amount of available time needed to avoid a crash and increase the likelihood of an accident and the severity of a crash once it does occur,” says Greg Ciezadlo, vice president, Farmers Insurance. “Yet motorists continue to endanger their lives and the lives of others by speeding or driving too fast for conditions.”
Speeding is a factor in 31 percent of all fatal crashes, killing an average of 1,000 Americans every month, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which estimates the cost to society of speed-related crashes to be more than $40 billion each year.
Speeding is a problem not only on freeways, but also on local streets. Many commuters opt to take surface streets, thinking they can more efficiently escape traffic and avoid congestion. A 2002 NHTSA study revealed that 87 percent of speeding-related fatalities occurred on roads that were not interstate highways. According to Ciezadlo, driving 45 miles per hour instead of 35 on a five-mile trip saves less than two minutes.
Traveling over the speed limit can be especially dangerous in bad weather conditions. Speeding was a factor in 53 percent of fatal crashes that occurred when there was snow or slush on the road and in 60 percent of those that happened in icy roads. “Most of the time, these accidents can be traced to drivers who think they can go faster than the conditions will allow them, or they’re in a hurry to get to their destination,” says Ciezadlo.
There are steps you can take to make your driving safer. Here are some useful tips from Farmers:
Giving yourself plenty of time to get where you’re going, heeding weather conditions, and using your common sense will help you drive more safely.
For more information on Farmers Insurance Group, visit www.farmers.com.
Courtesy of ARA Content