Speed limits have been the subject of fierce debate as of recent. Many officials seek to find a balance between the need for traffic flow and commuter safety. Officials also need to make sure that traffic speed isn’t set so low that no one obeys them. At the same time, they want to avoid making it so high that it increases injuries and even leads to deaths. The question has long been how high the speed limit can be to strike this important balance. A recent report helps shed some light on this subject.
Increasing the Speed Limit
It’s unsurprising that scientists, engineers, and others involved in the transportation industry have examined this issue closely. They want to know what a difference even a small increase in the speed limit can create. A recent study now helps add to the data about changes in the speed limit. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that a five percent increase in the speed limit led to a shocking eight percent increase in the number of fatalities on interstates and freeways. In addition, they also found that increasing the speed limit even by this much also led to a four percent increase in the number of fatalities on other roads.
Thousands of Additional Traffic Fatalities
The study also concluded that there are roughly thirty-three thousand more deaths during the years from 1995 to 2013 then there should have been had the speed limits been lower. In a single year, 2013, they found there were nearly a thousand more dead people than might have otherwise been expected. The increase was so great that it was enough to mitigate the effects from new car safety measures such as air bags. In short, just a minor increase in the legal speed limit led to massive numbers of deaths that might have otherwise been avoided.
New Increases in Michigan Speed Limits
Despite the problems with increasing the speed limits, officials have chosen to put new laws in place in Michigan as of January 5th, 2017. The new laws up the speed limits on many Michigan roads. Drivers can go up to 75 miles per hour on freeways. They can go up to 65 miles per hour on highways. Trucks can also go as fast as 65 miles per hour on the highways and freeways. School buses can also go up to 65 miles per hour as well.
These increased speed limits have the propensity of repeating the speeding accident death phenomenon that occurred in 2013. We urge that all drivers commute with caution, but we are aware that car accidents can happen in even the safest conditions. If you or someone you know is injured in a car accident, acquire the legal representation of a car accident attorney from Michigan Legal Center. Our experienced attorneys will be with you every step of the way as they seek maximum compensation for your losses. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.