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Increased speed limits lead to higher traffic fatalities

New York residents who rely on their vehicles to travel may enjoy the higher speed limits as they can get to their destinations much more quickly. However, a study from the Insurance Institute of Highway Safety found that increased speed limits resulted in an additional 33,000 fatalities between 1993 and 2013.

In the early 1970s, Congress passed the National Maximum Speed Limit law which threatened states with financial penalties if they posted speed limits that were higher than 55 mph. This was mostly due to fuel shortage concerns. That law was completely repealed in 1995. Since then, states have been increasing their speed limits. As of 2017, six states have speed limits of up to 80 mph. Texas became the first state to have a speed limit of 85 mph.

To determine the number of estimated traffic deaths caused by an increase in speed limits, the study compared the annual number of fatalities and the number of fatalities that would have been expected if the speed limits had not been raised. It was noted that the 33,000 estimated fatalities caused by the increased speed limits could be an underestimate due to limitations of the study.

In many car accidents, speeding or driving dangerously is often considered to be a main factor. If a car accident involving high speeds leaves one or more individuals with serious injuries, the speeding driver could potentially be held liable for damages. A personal injury attorney can advise an injured person on the next steps to take while working with the insurance company and the liable driver. If the insurance company accepts liability for the accident, the attorney can negotiate a settlement that covers medical bills and other damages.

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