What Is the Impact of Speeding on Car Accident Severity?

What Is the Impact of Speeding on Car Accident Severity?Speed limits are designed not just to control traffic but to ensure the safety of all road users. Driving within these limits allows for better control of the vehicle, more time to respond to sudden obstacles, and a significant reduction in the chances of severe accidents. When drivers choose to ignore these rules, they risk not only their own safety but also the safety of others sharing the road—leading to severe and devastating accidents.

Speeding-Related Car Accident Statistics

In Missouri, speeding is a prevalent issue. According to the Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety, approximately 33% of all traffic fatalities involved drivers who were driving too fast. It is also the most common factor in fatal collisions statewide. 

Speed can also lead to the loss of life in accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists; a pedestrian struck by a car traveling at 40 mph has only a 20% chance of survival, compared to 90% at 20 mph. Nationally, 28% of fatal crashes, 13% of injury crashes, and 9% of crashes that resulted in property damage in 2021 were speeding-related, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

High-Speed Crashes Can Lead to Serious Injuries

Speeding increases both the likelihood of an accident occurring and the severity of injuries sustained in a crash. High-speed crashes exponentially increase the energy exchanged upon impact, which can cause catastrophic damage to the vehicle’s structure. This often leads to more severe injuries as the car’s safety features, like airbags and crumple zones, may be overwhelmed or rendered less effective. As a result, occupants can suffer severe trauma.

Speeding also amplifies other risk factors such as reduced reaction time, decreased effectiveness of safety equipment, and increased difficulty in maneuvering the vehicle safely. Each of these factors alone may lead to a severe accident but combined, they create a perilous situation that is more likely to result in serious injuries or fatalities.

Common injuries in high-speed car accidents include:

Your Legal Rights After an Accident with a Speeding Driver

In Missouri, if you are injured by a speeding driver, you have the right to seek compensation. Filing an insurance claim or a lawsuit can help you recover from the financial burdens caused by the accident; you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other related costs.

In order to recover compensation, you will need to prove that the driver’s negligence caused the accident and your resulting injuries. Speeding is a form of negligence, but you will need to gather evidence such as traffic camera footage, witness statements, police reports, and other documents in order to prove it. This is where a lawyer’s support can be invaluable.

A Kansas City car accident attorney can gather the required evidence, build a compelling case in your favor, and guide you through each stage of the claims process. After your collision, contact a lawyer as soon as possible and learn how they can make a difference in your case.