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NTSB Says Speeding Is Killing Americans

Fatalities caused by car accidents have been on the rise across the United States. Mississippi residents may be interested in the reason for this, though that is something that experts don't agree on. Some blame the higher numbers of deaths on the fact that there are simply more people driving, while others blame distractions. But the National Transportation Safety Board says that there is a definite single cause of the increase in traffic deaths: speeding.

The NTSB studied U.S. traffic deaths from 2005 to 2014 and found that speeding killed nearly as many people as drunk driving. The finding prompted NTSB to recommend that penalties for speeding be increased.

The acting NTSB chairman says that part of the problem is that in addition to having lighter penalties, speeding is not condemned socially the way that drunk driving is. At an NTSB board meeting in July 2017, the chairman mentioned that unlike drunk driving, there are few social consequences associated with speeding, and there is no national awareness campaign aimed at stopping it.

Another problem is the way speed limits were designed. They are based on the average speed that cars on roads travel; not necessarily speeds that are safe. This is an old method called the 85th percentile rule because it bases speed limits on the speed that about 85 percent of cars are traveling. NTSB says there's a need to reevaluate the effectiveness of using the 85th percentile rule to set speed limits.

Speeding drivers can cause car accidents that harm other people. When someone is injured in a car accident, they might receive a settlement offer from the at-fault driver's insurance company. While this could seem like a relief to an injured person, many times such offers are actually less than the injured person might be entitled to. An injured person has a right to refuse an offer from an insurance company and seek a higher amount.