Speeding Not a Significant Cause of Accidents

Speed cameras are usually touted as a safety measure to reduce accidents. But even if speed cameras were successful at eliminating all accidents caused by exceeding the posted limit, crashes would only decline by 1.6% according to an analysis of data from 25 states.

It is clear that enforcement of speed limits is more about raising revenue that safety. But the reality is also that speed is the easiest violation to enforce, as well as the most objective.

If we really wanted to improve safety, we would employ a scientific traffic engineering approach to analyze all of the data to hone in on the most serious preventable causes of crashes and address those with a scientific approach. Instead, the world seems content to pretend they know and understand traffic engineering and have an understanding of traffic safety based on assumptions and guesswork. How else can we explain why there has yet to be (to our knowledge) a city’s traffic engineering department recommend, suggest, or request speed cameras to solve a safety problem? It’s always camera companies convincing police departments to pursue photo enforcement. The police know little about traffic safety, they know law enforcement. They do not understand or know the science behind many of the traffic laws and the numbers that appear on speed limit signs, all they know is what the law is and they are told and believe that enforcing the law improves safety. This does not make them experts in traffic safety.


Post a Comment

Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: