Speeding is one of the leading cause of car accidents in Georgia. The World Health Organization reports an injury victim is 20 times more likely to die in an impact at 80 kilometers-per-hour (50 mph) than 30 kilometers-per-hour (20 mph). The reason is simple: speed increases not only the likelihood of being in a collision, but also the severity of injuries that the collision causes.
There are many causes of Atlanta car accidents, but speed always exacerbates a crash, even if it isn't the cause. Victims always have a legal right to be compensated by the person or entity legally responsible for causing their injuries.
Pain and Suffering Damage Awards
Like other states, Georgia law protects an injury victim's right to be compensated for his or her pain and suffering. It can be difficult to place a dollar value upon the amount of suffering an accident victim experiences. Nonetheless, section 9-10-184 of the Georgia Code allows plaintiffs to present a jury with evidence of the monetary value for this award.
This can be done through medical expert testimony about the extent and impact of the victim's injuries. Other evidence might include documentation for time missed from work, friends or family members' testimony about the impact on the victim's daily activities or the victim's own testimony about the pain he or she experienced.
The more painful an injury is, the greater the amount of pain and suffering damages the victim is entitled to. Thus, in a speeding-related accident which caused extensive injuries, a victim may be entitled to a much larger pain and suffering award. Because pain and suffering is often the largest component of a personal injury award, this can make a significant impact on the victim's overall personal injury settlement. An Atlanta car accident attorney will protect your legal rights and ensure you are fairly compensated for your pain and suffering.
The Pervasive Problem of Speeding
Car accidents have been a constant hazard to American public safety. The Washington Post reports that over eighteen thousand traffic deaths occurred in the first half of 2017. This equates to more than one hundred Americans dying every day, simply as a result of getting in a vehicle. Speeding is often overshadowed by more controversial car accident causes such as drunk driving. But according to the National Transportation Safety Board, speeding accounted for approximately the same number of traffic fatalities as drunk driving between 2005 and 2014.
The question becomes one of preventing drivers from speeding altogether. Photo enforcement technologies are widely acknowledged to be effective at deterring speeding. The National Center for Biotechnology Information published a longitudinal review of studies which measured the efficacy of automated enforcement technology programs. Of 28 studies reviewed, every single one reported a lower number of crashes after implementation of a speed enforcement technology program.
Bloomberg reports that, despite the known success rates of such technologies, these automated enforcement programs are currently only used in 14 states and the District of Columbia. Their efficacy has caused the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to recommend that states remove laws which prohibit the use of such technologies.
Still, meaningful change will not occur until drivers accept personal responsibility for their actions behind the wheel. This is, in fact, the very reason why photo enforcement is so effective: It holds drivers accountable for their speed.
It is important for drivers to always be aware and cautious of their speed. Friends and family members should speak up when a driver's speed is not safe. While this can be an uncomfortable discussion, it is one that can save lives.