What the feds really say about speeding
I have found that the most reliable way to ensure that someone calls me an idiot is to point out that speeding is a dangerous and anti-social behavior. There is no easier way to attract the epithet of fascist than to support strong traffic law enforcement -- both by police officers and by electronic means.
That doesn't bother me. Sticks and stones, you know. What does bug me is when folks cite such authorities as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to the effect that speeding is just fine and the problem is all those people on the road who are going too slow.
For the record, NHTSA spokesman Eric Bolton said he knows of no data collected by the agency that woulod support tthe proposition that slow drivers are more dangerous than speeders.
Here is a small excerpt of what NHTSA has to say about speeding in its publication Traffic Safety Facts:
Speeding is one of the most prevalent factors contributing to traffic crashes. The economic cost to society of speeding-related crashes is estimated by NHTSA to be $40.4 billion per year. In 2007, speeding was a contributing factor in 31 percent of all fatal crashes, and 13,040 lives were lost in speeding-related crashes.
The total economic cost of crashes was estimated at $230.6 billion in 2000. Motor vehicle crashes cost society an estimated $7,300 per second. In 2000, the cost of speeding-related crashes was estimated to be $40.4 billion — $76,865 per minute or $1,281 per second.
Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to steer safely around curves or objects in the roadway, extends the distance necessary to stop a vehicle, and increases the distance a vehicle travels while the driver reacts to a dangerous situation.
So if any folks want to make the case that speeding is safe, I recommend a good round of name-calling. That really is the best they got.