Emphasis on Speed Questioned, and Rightfully So

It’s worth pointing out a recent article at TheNewspaper.com about the former Australian road safety official who questioned the emphasis on speed for improving safety. We agree and have always been troubled with this obsession. Especially in light of the NHTSA report that says that “speed too fast” causes fewer than 2.9% of crashes.
The reality is that measuring speed is the easiest and most obvious violation to observe and prosecute, along with red light running which makes it an easy target for public perception and to fill government coffers. Lane violations, distracted driving, and driving under the influence are much harder to identify and have no automated ticketing solutions.
It’s important to remind everyone again that “speed-related” and “speeding” can often mean “too fast for conditions” and does not mean “above the posted limit” which is the only violation a camera can effectively detect. Meanwhile there are several engineering measures that can be employed to improve safety, such as rumble strips and ensuring that speed limits are appropriate to begin with, along with public education. How about switching some revenue from the seatbelt PSA’s to messages about distracted driving and driving in poor weather conditions, as well as messages to clear up misconceptions about driving laws?

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