Following posted speed limits is one of the most fundamental rules of the road. Unfortunately, whether due to impatience, distraction or simple recklessness, too often motorists endanger themselves and others by driving too fast.
According to the Maryland Department of Transportation, speeding is a major factor in more than one-third of U.S. auto crashes. In Maryland, speeding and aggressive driving contributed to over 1,000 crash injuries and over 60 fatalities in 2020 alone.
Why speeding is so dangerous
When a driver is behind the wheel, the difference between 40, 50 or 60 miles per hour may feel relatively minor. However, as drivers increase their speed, they have much less time to react to changes in traffic as well as potential road hazards. Research shows that the risk of causing serious injury or death doubles for every 10 miles per hour over 50 MPH that a driver travels.
How to avoid conflicts with aggressive drivers
When another motorist is behaving irresponsibly, defensive driving habits may help to prevent an accident. Some basic defensive techniques to avoid conflict include:
- Planning ahead to ensure you have time to reach your destination
- Staying out of the passing lane if you are driving more slowly
- Allowing aggressive drivers to pass
- Ignoring rude gestures or words from other motorists
At 55 MPH, it only takes about 4 seconds to travel the length of a football field. When aggressive motorists drive faster than the posted limit, it may endanger everyone sharing the roadway. Those injured due to another driver’s reckless behavior should know that the law may entitle them to the compensation needed to cover medical expenses, lost wages and more.