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NTSB report proposes ways to discourage speeding

According to the National Transportation Safety Board, speeding is the main cause behind the increase in traffic deaths in New York and across the U.S. The agency has released a report showing how 31 percent of all traffic fatalities from 2005 to 2014 were the result of speeding. The number of fatalities (112,580) was second only to the number of drunk driving deaths (112,948).

The NTSB has shown how going even 10 mph over the speed limit can drastically cut down the chances of a pedestrian surviving a collision, from a 60 percent chance at 30 mph to a 40 percent chance at 40 mph. The report states that current speed limits do not help.

Besides changing the speed limit, the NTSB recommends that punishments for speeding be made equal to those meted out to intoxicated drivers. By creating a social stigma around speeding, as with DUI or with driving without a seat belt, people will be more aware of its dangers. It also encourages more widespread use of speeding cameras and other enforcement tools. Many cities are working hard to introduce lane configurations and other redesigns to keep pedestrians and bicyclists safe. However, such changes have met with complaints, lawsuits, and proposals from elected officials to ban them.

Occupants of other vehicles who are injured in a car collision that has been caused by a motorist who was traveling in excess of the posted speed limit or driving too fast for the prevailing road or weather conditions might want to meet with an attorney to discuss their options. The attorney might first seek a settlement with the at-fault party’s insurance company. If that proves to be fruitless, a lawsuit might be advisable.

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