News & Resources

June 20, 2016. Category: Car Accidents

NHTSA Warns Against Aggressive Driving

When you get behind the wheel, there are a million things that may influence your experience on the road. Exhaustion and distraction are two major issues for motorists. But another problem is the possibility of aggressive driving.

After all, who among us hasn’t encountered an impatient driver swerving in and out of lanes to get around traffic that they deem is too slow? Or maybe you’ve witnessed a driver following a vehicle too closely, increasing the possibility of a rear-end collision if the car stops too quickly?

And then there’s the late-night red light that is always so tempting to speed through. It’s likely that we’ve even done some of this aggressive driving ourselves, as it can be tempting and, at times, easier than following traffic laws.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) defines aggressive driving as when “an individual commits a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.”

As car accident attorneys in Tampa, we fully understand the dangers of aggressive driving. Reckless decisions on the road can lead to injury or even death.

A Recent Report Sheds Light on the Issue

A recent report evaluated drivers in Seattle, Washington and College Station, Texas. The Seattle research revealed that most drivers operated their motor vehicles at roughly 5 miles per hour above or below the speed limit, and speeding typically remained within 10-15 miles per hour above the speed limit. Speeding 20 miles per hour above the speed limit in this geographic area was rare.

The College Station research revealed similar results. Once again, the majority of vehicle operators drove roughly 5 miles per hour above or below the speed limit, and most speeding did not exceed 15 miles per hour.

In order to further characterize speeding, the study measured the percentage of trips with any level of speeding, as well as the average speed per trip. In Seattle, results showed that most speeding was either incidental or a small amount of speeding on a regular basis. In College Station, there was an even higher concentration of incidental speeding, with most of the data clustered in this region of the data chart.

Additional Findings

The study concluded a number of interesting details regarding speeding in the two demographic areas of their choosing. Across the board, young males are the most likely group of drivers to speed. However, while young females in Seattle drive more like young males, young females in College Station drive more like older females, revealing a stark difference between the two locations.

Day of the week and time of day also impacted speeding, with weekends being the most popular days for speeding and rush hours being the most likely hours.

According to AAA, aggressive driving causes more than half of all traffic fatalities, and 25 percent of drivers believe that speeding is acceptable. It is possible that our culture has normalized aggressive driving to such an extent that we no longer consider it a concern. Yet, the statistics show that it is a much greater threat than we may believe.

After all, aggressive driving has the potential to not only impact you as the driver, but also everyone with whom you interact on the road. You owe it to yourself, your family and your fellow drivers to pay attention to traffic laws, be aware of your surroundings and slow down. Your destination will still be there when you arrive.

If you or someone you love has been injured in an auto accident that was caused by an aggressive driver, contact Tampa car accident lawyer for a free consultation regarding your legal rights.

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