Posted by: Kisling, Nestico & Redick, LLC
Across the nation, segments of the public clamor for raising speed limits. The argument is that today’s cars are safer, today’s roads are safer, and most important, today’s drivers want to get places faster. Our lives are filled with more tasks, errands, trips and duties than in the past, so we need to get where we’re going faster.
Unfortunately for those arguing for higher speeds, there are studies showing that when speed limits climb for cars and for 18-wheelers, deaths and injuries in truck accidents and passenger vehicle crashes climb, too.
“Crashes at these high speeds overwhelm the safety features that are built into modern vehicles,” a spokesperson for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says. As good as today’s cars and trucks are, “they’re not designed to handle crashes at 75 or 80 miles an hour,” he says.
We have evidence in Ohio supporting his assertion. According to a recent newspaper article, the Ohio State Patrol says that on our highways that have the relatively new 70-mph speed limits, injuries have gone up 17 percent in just 18 months. The speed limit was raised in the summer of 2013.
The trucking industry claims that when speed limits rise, cars pass big rigs at higher speeds, making accidents more likely and more dangerous. Of course, the people in the smaller vehicles — our cars, pick-ups and SUVs — are the ones at greatest danger in those collisions with big, commercial trucks.
Those hurt in truck accidents often deal with extreme injuries that include brain damage, spinal cord damage, amputations, crushed bones, severe internal injuries and much more. If you or a loved one has been hurt by a reckless, fatigued or distracted trucker, talk to an attorney experienced in complex claims against not only the truck driver, but often the employer as well.