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Why do so many drivers think speeding is safe?

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Why do so many drivers think speeding is safe?

Old 12-02-23, 02:06 PM
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Why do so many drivers think speeding is safe?

AAA survey says it all.
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Old 12-02-23, 03:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Korina
The title of the article ("Why So Many U.S. Drivers Think Speeding is Perfectly Safe") is very misleading, and actually contradicts the results of the study that it is based on. For instance, the article states:
Only 46.5 percent of U.S. drivers consider going more than 15 miles per hour over the speed limit on the freeway to be "extremely" or "very" dangerous

Nearly 80% of those surveyed consider driving more than 15 mph over the speed limit on the freeway to be "
extremely", "very", or "somewhat" dangerous. 17.4% stated it was "slightly" dangerous, and only 2.7% stated it was not dangerous at all. So, although the statement in the article is correct, it misrepresents the overall results, which is that the vast majority of people do consider speeding to be dangerous.

Last edited by tomato coupe; 12-02-23 at 03:46 PM.
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Old 12-02-23, 03:43 PM
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As a retired automotive regional technical specialist, I can tell you that there are a lot of drivers that think speeding, tailgating, driving distracted, etc are all okay, because they are sold on the advertising that the systems in their vehicles (automatic braking, automatic lane correction, etc) will keep them from crashing. Even if they do crash, the safety systems (SRS Airbags, primarily) will keep them from being injured.
It's only when they slam into that stout, immovable object at a high rate of speed that they learn that all the systems in place won't overcome the laws of physics and stopping suddenly at a high G force while relying on airbags alone and not wearing a seat belt (SRS stands for Supplemental Restraint System) can result in some pretty painful and long lasting physical consequences. Believe me, I've seen it too many times in my career while investigating crash claims.
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Old 12-02-23, 05:27 PM
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Perhaps a more telling survey, which I heard about years ago but can't be bothered to look up, found that 90% of drivers think they're better than average at it. Like Lake Wobegon, all the children are above average.

So, the answer to the question is, "Hubris".
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Old 12-02-23, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by genejockey
Perhaps a more telling survey, which I heard about years ago but can't be bothered to look up, found that 90% of drivers think they're better than average at it. Like Lake Wobegon, all the children are above average.

So, the answer to the question is, "Hubris".
Which is remarkable as I m always wondering what some of these people do for a living, because judging by how they drive, they appear to be the stupidest people on the damned planet.
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Old 12-02-23, 07:47 PM
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And a bit over 40% admitted to having done it in the last month. And there's this: 'And because those numbers are self-reported by drivers, researchers say the reality is likely even worse.'

Originally Posted by tomato coupe
The title of the article ("Why So Many U.S. Drivers Think Speeding is Perfectly Safe") is very misleading, and actually contradicts the results of the study that it is based on. For instance, the article states:

Nearly 80% of those surveyed consider driving more than 15 mph over the speed limit on the freeway to be "extremely", "very", or "somewhat" dangerous. 17.4% stated it was "slightly" dangerous, and only 2.7% stated it was not dangerous at all. So, although the statement in the article is correct, it misrepresents the overall results, which is that the vast majority of people do consider speeding to be dangerous.
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Old 12-02-23, 08:25 PM
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Let’s tie this into A&S and cycling. The survey is talking about freeway speeds
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Old 12-02-23, 08:32 PM
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Let’s tie this into A&S and cycling. The survey is talking about freeway speeds
I live in the high desert and the roads between cities are 45 mph, 55 mph and 65 mph speed limits and most speed above the limit.
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Old 12-02-23, 09:08 PM
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I commuted by car in Brooklyn and parts of NYC, where they artificially set the speed limits on the highways about 5-10 mph lower then needed so as to increase the cost of a speeding ticket. Pretty much nobody pays attention to 50 and it’s typical to be the slow poke doing 60. The local streets are mostly 25 mph, also about 5mph lower then typical communities in NY State, but IMO a good thing as they have a huge problem with people going much faster then 25 and mowing down pedestrians and cyclists, so 25 I’m OK with. They need to be installing speed cameras in the highways and giving out tickets to the morons who think 75-80 in a 55 zone is appropriate.
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Old 12-02-23, 09:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Korina
And a bit over 40% admitted to having done it in the last month. And there's this: 'And because those numbers are self-reported by drivers, researchers say the reality is likely even worse.'
That doesn't change anything. The article totally misrepresents the results of the survey. End of story.
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Old 12-02-23, 09:44 PM
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A large part of the answer is because many drivers drive on interstates that were designed for 75 mph speed limits, but are posted at 55 or thereabouts. Many are also old enough to remember the NMSL, which artificially limited legal speeds well below roadways' design speeds. So many drivers have been unintentionally trained to regard speed limits with skepticism, or worse.

Also, it is actually impossible to crash due to speed alone, without violating at least one other rule of the road. Lazy cops cite speed as the cause of almost all crashes, but that's because they are constitutionally opposed to thinking and/or working. So, technically anyway, speeding is safe if the driver can manage to obey all the other rules.
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Old 12-02-23, 10:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B.
I commuted by car in Brooklyn and parts of NYC, where they artificially set the speed limits on the highways about 5-10 mph lower then needed so as to increase the cost of a speeding ticket. Pretty much nobody pays attention to 50 and itís typical to be the slow poke doing 60. The local streets are mostly 25 mph, also about 5mph lower then typical communities in NY State, but IMO a good thing as they have a huge problem with people going much faster then 25 and mowing down pedestrians and cyclists, so 25 Iím OK with. They need to be installing speed cameras in the highways and giving out tickets to the morons who think 75-80 in a 55 zone is appropriate.
Is it possible to do 80 on a Brooklyn freeway most of the time? I've had a sat morning or two when leaving for TTown when the beltway was nearly clear and 80 was possible but otherwise I'm happy when everyone manages to flow at 45.
I tend to be at the extreme end of things, driving around neighborhood roads I tend to stick to about 20mph and annoy people because I won't go faster. On the main roads of the town I often do the 30mph listed speed. On the highways/freeways I do 70-75 unless they're really clear with no real traffic then I have no problem doing 80-85 unless I have kids in the car, in which case its 65 maybe 70 if the roads are clear. And if its a truly deserted highway, with absolutely nothing in sight, and I'm in the miata, then I've got no problem stepping on it.
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Old 12-03-23, 01:57 AM
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Originally Posted by StanSeven
Letís tie this into A&S and cycling. The survey is talking about freeway speeds
The safest route between Arcata and Eureka is on the highway between them and yeah, I didn't notice it was specifically about freeways. My bad.
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Old 12-03-23, 04:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Korina
The safest route between Arcata and Eureka is on the highway between them and yeah, I didn't notice it was specifically about freeways. My bad.
I'd much rather take Old Arcata road. Way more sccenic/pleasant. Gonna take longer and you have to climb up into Myrtletown, but worth it! Also I'm not sure that the 101 is safer.... faster cars with more traffic, but a wider shoulder. So there's a trade-off.

HSU alum here, class of 2010. I do miss the riding up there, esp. the Maple Creek / Butler Valley loop, Fieldbrook loop etc.
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Old 12-03-23, 06:41 AM
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I'm sure most people, including cyclists speed. Even cops speed. I've been passed by motorists going much faster than me with a very nice bike on their bike rack.


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Old 12-03-23, 07:06 AM
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Originally Posted by work4bike
I'm sure most people, including cyclists speed.
.
Only 15 posts before anything about cyclists or cycling was even mentioned, unless rants about evil and stupid motorists are considered bicycle A&S related.
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Old 12-03-23, 07:10 AM
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Speeding can be safe or dangerous depending entirely on traffic and road conditions. It is often far more dangerous to be driving too slow on a motorway. It always amazes me how many drivers like to mix it up with tailgating HGVs at around 60 mph.

So yeah I speed a little on the motorway when itís safe and it often is. The biggest risk is getting a ticket.
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Old 12-03-23, 09:00 AM
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Originally Posted by TC1
Also, it is actually impossible to crash due to speed alone,
You're kidding, right? How do you explain (as an example) a crash during a qualifying run at the Indy 500? Professional driver, a car that is meticulously maintained and set up for the conditions, a track surface that is clean and free of bumps or holes, running out there with no other traffic? There are things called physics, limits of traction, aerodynamics, etc. Too much speed and you exceed those limits, and bad things happen.
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Old 12-03-23, 09:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Russ Roth
Is it possible to do 80 on a Brooklyn freeway most of the time? I.
Well of course. 7AM on a Sunday, going down the Belt ?. Just watch out for cops as that's an expensive excessive speed ticket (30 over) as well as possible reckless driving. The actual highway is designed for such speeds though.
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Old 12-03-23, 11:00 AM
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AAA has done these studies annually for many years. I have found them useful. (2022 study is published in 2023, etc.)

The 2022 summary is at https://aaafoundation.org/wp-content/...Index-2022.pdf

The full report is at https://newsroom.aaa.com/asset/traff...ndex-nov-2023/

I will say any article I read which doesnít link to the x theyíre addressing has low credibility with me.
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Old 12-03-23, 11:25 AM
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The safest speed is the average speed, which is most always higher than the posted limit.
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Old 12-03-23, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Bald Paul
You're kidding, right? How do you explain (as an example) a crash during a qualifying run at the Indy 500?

​​​​​​
There are no rules of the road applied to solo qualifying on a race track.

Make some effort to understand the point before continuing your inane attempt at discussion.
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Old 12-03-23, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Steve B.
Well of course. 7AM on a Sunday, going down the Belt ?. Just watch out for cops as that's an expensive excessive speed ticket (30 over) as well as possible reckless driving. The actual highway is designed for such speeds though.
Are you sure that the Belt Parkway was designed for 80mph? It's an older road with pretty narrow lanes, poor shoulders, tight underpasses, and short ramps. By modern safety standards, it's not a great road
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Old 12-03-23, 12:20 PM
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The problem is that we are all perfectly aware that speed limits are somewhat arbitrary, that the police can ticket you for not maintaining above-limit traffic speed and that police and fire demonstrate all the time that speeding is safe and perfectly acceptable when "necessary".

With all that ambiguity, of course people speed. It's just a question of how much and in what circumstances.
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Old 12-03-23, 12:33 PM
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Originally Posted by john m flores
Are you sure that the Belt Parkway was designed for 80mph? It's an older road with pretty narrow lanes, poor shoulders, tight underpasses, and short ramps. By modern safety standards, it's not a great road
I was thinking of the section from about the Sunrise overpass all the way down to Flatbush Ave., itís an interstate quality road.
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