GHSA Addresses Challenges of Reducing Speeding Deaths

Feb. 12, 2019

Nearly one third of motor vehicle-related fatalities involve speeding, so Illinois residents may be wondering what is being done about this. At the root of the issue seems to be a lack of proper education on the dangers of speeding. Speeding raises the risk for a crash as well as the severity of those that occur, endangering pedestrians and bicyclists in particular. Conversely, a slight decrease in speed makes a positive impact on crash risk and severity.

The Governors Highway Safety Association has released a report entitled "Speeding Away from Zero: Rethinking a Forgotten Traffic Safety Challenge," which shows how the concept and principles of Vision Zero, a project aiming for zero roadway fatalities, are far from being effectively implemented. The GHSA cited lack of education as a reason and seeks to create a speed reduction program that could be carried out through its State Highway Safety Offices.

These state offices are in a unique position to spearhead educational efforts and to promote stricter enforcement of speeding laws. They could also encourage the building of roundabouts and other traffic calming elements.

Reducing speed is critical, and while many urban areas like Boston and New York City have done this through the alteration of speed limits, it's even more needed in rural areas. In 2016 alone, over 5,000 people died in speeding-related crashes on rural roadways.

Speeding is a form of negligence and so might form the basis for a personal injury claim. Those involved in a car accident who are less than 50 percent at fault may be eligible for compensation under this state's negligence rule, but before moving forward with a claim, they may want to consult with an attorney. If retained, the attorney might hire third parties like investigators and medical experts to bolster the case.

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