Speed and Aggressive Driving
Speeding is serious because it:
- Reduces a driver's ability to steer safely around curves or objects
- Extends stopping distance, which is especially dangerous when sudden braking is required
- Increases the risk of crashes and injuries because other vehicles and pedestrians may not be able to correctly judge the vehicle’s distance
- Increases fuel consumption and costs
As speed gets higher, the risk of death, disfigurement and serious injury during crashes increases, while at the same time, the effectiveness of air bags, seat belts and other safety devices decreases.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, (NHTSA), a crash on a road with a speed limit of 65 mph or greater is:
- More than twice as likely to result in death than a crash on a road with a speed limit of 45 or 50 mph
- Nearly five times as likely to result in death than a crash on a road with a speed limit of 40 mph or below
Always obey the posted speed limit. Don’t get caught by law enforcement wrongly assuming there’s a “buffer zone” surrounding the posted speed limit. Speed limits are related to road conditions, and are enforced to save lives and protect motorists.
Avoid Being an Aggressive Driver
While your life may be in the fast lane, always plan ahead when driving and allow yourself extra time for unexpected delays.
- Concentrate, relax and drive the posted speed limit.
- Use your signals to indicate a turn or lane change.
- Provide appropriate distance when changing lanes after passing another vehicle.
- Do not block the passing lane or tailgate.
- Pay attention to traffic and weather reports for potential delays.
- Have at least one alternate route in mind. While it may be a little longer in distance, this route could be less congested.
- If all else fails, just be late. The world will continue to spin.
Identifying aggressive drivers is simple. They take out their frustrations on you and your fellow motorists, which can lead to a crash or even violence. Aggressive drivers:
- Tailgate and make frequent lane changes
- Whip in and out of lanes to try to advance ahead
- Run red lights and speed
When you see aggressive drivers on the roadways, you should:
- Make every attempt to get out of their way.
- Put your pride aside and don’t challenge them
- Avoid eye contact and ignore gestures
- Don’t sink to their level; remain a safe, courteous driver
- Report serious aggressive drivers to law enforcement after pulling over in a safe place; be prepared to provide a description of the vehicle, location, direction of travel and license plate