A New Haven auto accident that killed a North Haven woman is being blamed in large part on excessive speed. The driver that was killed was ejected from her vehicle after a collision with another vehicle which was following at an excessive speed. Once the two vehicles collided one car spun out of control and hit the guardrail which then ejected the driver from the car. After she was ejected from the vehicle she was struck in the roadway.
This terrible and tragic accident was a direct result of excessive speed which is often the cause of devastating accidents. In fact, the greater the speed of a vehicle that is involved in an accident the deadlier the accident becomes. While excessive speed does not always lead to a fatal accident it is often a factor in these types of accidents being more dangerous for all involved.
According to the IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety) excessive speed was a factor in 29% of all fatal crashes in 2020. Given those numbers, excessive speed was a factor in the deaths of more than 11,000 drivers that year. Speed kills more often because it makes it harder for a vehicle to come to a complete stop quickly enough to react to sudden changes in the environment on the road. It is also a factor in these types of accidents because it often leads to a vehicle driving out of control and not being able to make sudden changes in direction or speed without interfering with another vehicle.
It is often assumed that excessive speeding only happens on highways, but this is not true, according to a phone survey done by the AAA Foundation in 2020 where 45% of drivers self-reported that they had driven at more than 15MPH over the speed limit on a highway. Just as concerning, in that same survey, 35% of drivers reported that they often would drive more than 10MPH over the speed limit on residential roads. These numbers are concerning to safety experts who realize that excessive speed is a hazard to all who drive on the road.
There is a little more data on who is behind all of this speeding. While there is no definitive way to say who is out there speeding on a regular basis, some inferences can be drawn by looking at traffic data over time. Crashes and violations, as studied by the IIHS, that involve excessive speeding are much more likely to involve an experienced and younger driver than those with more experience behind the wheel. In fact, 16-19 year olds were found, in a California study, to have been cited for excessive speeding three times more then those drivers that were over the age of 30 years old.
While studies and research can identify those that are a greater risk of potentially speeding at excessive rates and therefore who are more likely to get into a New Haven auto accident, they are not predictive of everyone who is driving at excessive speeds and therefore it is critical that all drivers be aware of the dangers that this type of behavior carries when behind the wheel and that the best way to stay safe when driving is to follow the speed limit and engage in good safety practices so you are not getting into a situation that could put your life at risk.
If you or a loved one have been injured in an accident you may need an experienced attorney to review your case and work with you on protecting your long-term interests. Contact our office and one of our attorneys who has worked on cases similar to yours will speak with you.