In one recent year, 251 persons throughout Texas died as a result of speeding; 38 of them were involved in speeding-related crashes in the San Antonio area alone. Those in the San Antonio area should understand their risk of involvement in a speeding-related accident and work to avoid drivers who may be acting erratically or driving over the speed limit.
There is a glimmer of hope for drivers throughout Texas and San Antonio, though. The total number of motor vehicle traffic fatalities saw a decrease of 2.36 percent from 2017 to 2018—and speeding accounted for a relatively minimal number of deaths last year. Just under 6.9 percent of fatal accidents statewide were traced back to speeding.
If you or a loved one have been involved in a motor vehicle accident that involved a speeding driver, it’s important to seek legal counsel as soon as possible. A qualified and experienced attorney may be able to help you pursue compensation for damages in court, help guide you through the legal process, and offer invaluable advice concerning your rights and wellbeing.
Speeding as a Factor in Accidents in San Antonio
Speeding played a part in numerous accidents that occurred throughout the San Antonio area last year. While not every accident proved fatal, vehicle operators and passengers who may be involved in such accidents should understand the degree of risk they face as they head out onto the road.
Vehicle operators and passengers in Bexar County (where San Antonio is located), along with pedestrians and other parties who may face injuries from vehicle crashes, may do well to consider the following statistics from 2018:
- Vehicle accidents caused by speeding were suspected to be at the root of 81 serious injuries
- 253 non-incapacitating crashes could be traced back to speeding
- Drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and others sustained 371 non-incapacitating injuries as a result of speeding
- Speeding led to a total of 1,974 vehicle crashes
Speeding Drivers: An Overview
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data indicates that young males are particularly likely to engage in speeding and die as a result. As men age, their chances of experiencing a fatal accident due to their speeding decreases considerably. One-third of men from the ages of 15 to 24 who were involved in fatal crashes throughout 2013 were speeding at the time of their accident.
Many drivers who speed pose a heightened risk to themselves and those around them due to alcohol consumption. Alcohol isn’t the only reason people speed, of course, but statistics show that nearly half of speeding drivers involved in fatal crashes had elevated blood-alcohol concentrations. 42 percent of drivers who died as a result of speeding displayed BACs of 0.08 or higher; this figure jumps to 74 percent for crashes occurring between the hours of midnight and 3 a.m.
Avoiding Speeding Drivers
Many speeding drivers engage in other acts associated with aggressive or reckless driving. In Texas, drivers who act exceptionally aggressive and display signs of anger or offensive behavior may even receive road rage tickets. The best course of action to follow if you believe another driver is speeding—or otherwise acting aggressively—is to increase the physical distance between their vehicle and yours.
Leaving the area that aggressive drivers may be driving in helps lower your chances of being in a motor vehicle accident. The peace of mind offered by avoiding the situation may also help keep you calm and able to drive in accordance with the law. Many drivers who speed exhibit other signs of aggressive driving or road rage, too, which can increase the risk you face. Be on the lookout for the following signs that a driver’s speeding may escalate into road rage:
- Flashing lights
- Excessive and/or abrupt lane changing
- Sudden accelerations and/or decelerations
- Cutting off other drivers
- Utilizing profane or lewd language or gestured towards other motorists
Speeding’s Impact on Accident Fatality
Many motor vehicle accidents have the potential to prove fatal. Some motorists may find themselves wondering why crashes involving speeding tend to be exceptionally deadly. There are numerous factors that speeding introduces in the event of an accident. The risk of crashes, injuries, and even death increases exponentially if a driver elects to speed.
According to the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety, speed increases the risk of fatal vehicle accidents in three key ways:
- It increases the distance required for the driver to stop the vehicle once they begin to brake
- It causes an exponential increase in the amount of energy expended during impact
- It increases the distance a vehicle may travel before a driver recognizes and responds to an emergency
The Importance of Legal Advice
As in the event of any motor vehicle accident, it’s important for speeding accident victims to get in touch with an attorney following a crash. An auto accident lawyer may be able to help victims pursue compensation for damages, including:
- Medical treatment costs incurred as a result of the accident
- Loss of income or diminished future earning abilities
- Pain, suffering, and mental anguish
Those who have experienced the loss of a loved one due to speeding may also be eligible to file wrongful death claims. These claims offer some respite from the financial pressure caused by such losses. Wrongful death claims may allow claimants to receive compensation for damages such as:
- A loved one’s medical bills
- Funeral and burial expenses
- The economic value of lost wages, income, or earning capacity
Drivers often jump to offer excuses for speeding, but no excuse can mask the fact that the behavior is reckless and poses an immense risk to every motorist on the road. This irresponsible behavior lies at the center of hundreds of fatal crashes state-wide and claimed numerous lives within Bexar County lines last year.
If you or a loved one were in a speeding accident, or if you lost somebody to a crash caused by speeding, speaking with an attorney can help assess your case and may assist you in pursuing compensation for damages.