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Speed Can Kill in New York Traffic Accidents

By Dansker & Aspromonte

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July 20, 2024

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New York speed limits aren’t just to maintain an orderly traffic flow—they’re an important safety measure. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), about 30% of traffic fatalities each year are speeding-related and these numbers keep rising.  There were 322 speed-related traffic fatalities in New York in 2014. Despite this high cost, speeding is an ongoing problem in NYC and beyond.

Speed-Related Traffic Fatalities

Motorcyclists involved in fatal accidents were most likely to be speeding, followed by passenger cars and light trucks. Only 7% of large truck drivers involved in fatal crashes were speeding at the time of the accident. In many fatal accidents, speed combined with one or more other risk factors. In 2014, for example, 41% of speeding drivers involved in fatal crashes had blood alcohol content (BAC) readings of .08% or greater.

Speed-related accidents are also more common as road conditions become more dangerous. While just 18% of fatal car and truck accidents on dry roads involve speeding, that percentage climbs for surfaces that are wet or snow-covered. A full 40% of traffic deaths on icy roads involve speeding, though that figure includes both exceeding the posted speed limit and driving too fast for conditions.

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Despite the Risks, Most New Yorkers Speed

Data from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene reveals that 64% of NYC adult drivers admitted to exceeding the speed limit by at least 10 mph in the previous 30 days. 13% of those surveyed admitted to speeding often. Adult drivers who sped were also more likely to engage in other risky behaviors, such as texting and driving.

Liability for New York Speeding Accidents

Because speeding is a violation of New York state law, a driver who was speeding at the time of a traffic accident can be found to have been negligent per se. That complicated term simply means that violating a state safety law is by definition negligent, reducing the burden of proof for the injury victim. Violation of a city ordinance does not carry the same legal weight, but may still be presented as some evidence of negligence on the part of the driver.

Of course, the injury victim will still have to prove damages, and that those damages are the result of the accident caused by the speeding driver’s negligence. Damages are different in every case, but often include compensation for:

  • Death
  • Loss of Limb
  • Brain Injury
  • Fractured Bones
  • Surgeries
  • Bodily Pain and Suffering
  • Emotional Distress and Problems
  • Lost or reduced Earnings
  • Medical and Rehabilitative Costs
  • Hospital and Nursing Care Expenses
  • Property Damages

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An Experienced New York Car Accident Lawyer Can Help

If you’ve been injured in an accident with a driver who was speeding, or you have lost a loved one to a speed-related accident, you owe it to yourself to get more information about your rights and options. The sooner you take steps to protect yourself and your family, the better.

A personal injury attorney experienced in car accident cases can be your best resource. Take the next step right now. You can schedule a free consultation with Dansker&Aspromonte by filling out the contact form on this page, or by calling 212-540-2987 right now.

Call or text (212) 540-2987 or complete a Free Case Evaluation form

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