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Speeding remains a leading cause of car accident fatalities

In recent years a great deal of media attention has been given to the dangers of drunk driving and distracted driving. Yet one of the leading causes of fatal car accidents should be very familiar to Texas motorists: speeding. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, speeding is a significant factor in about one-third of all car accident fatalities.

Speeding means more than just exceeding the posted limit. It also means driving too fast for conditions and racing. Excessive speed lowers a driver's reaction time, and increases the severity of any accident that occurs.

The GHSA recommends that the federal government, through the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, make reduction of speeding a high priority and undertake research to figure out the best ways to accomplish that goal. The GHSA also recommends that the NHTSA look into a requirement that passenger vehicles be designed so they cannot exceed a certain speed. The group also supports the use of federal incentive grants to compel states to take stronger speeding enforcement and prevention actions. The GHSA supports legislation banning the sale or use of radar detectors and other devices designed to undermine enforcement of speed laws.

Speeding is negligent behavior, and if it results in a fatal accident the victim's next of kin can sue the negligent driver in a wrongful death lawsuit. The victim's family can recover damages for loss of support and loss of companionship. In a survival action the victim's estate can recover additional damages, including the pain and suffering the victim endured before death.

Source: Governors Highway Safety Association, "Speeding & Aggressive Driving," accessed April 27, 2015

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