One of the biggest problems relating to road safety is the issue of motorists driving over the speed limit.
Despite the numerous messages relating to adherence to the speed limit, many accidents are attributed to speeding. For some reason, normal, sound minded human beings turn into irrational speed freaks when they get behind the wheel of a car; irrespective of race, gender or age. All motorists should remember that the faster one drives the less reaction time there will be in the event of an unexpected occurrence on the road such as a child running after a ball or a distracted motorist who sways into your lane. Of course, many motorists have an arsenal of excuses, we mean reasons why they feel justified to drive at break neck speed and here are some of them:
- Being late
- Being in a foul mood
- Driving a car which permits them to accelerate and reach high speeds with ease
- Being impatient
- Thrill seeking: speed gives them a high
- Erroneously believing they are safer drivers than everyone else on the road
- Putting all their faith in the safety mechanisms and features of their car
- Believing they are above the law / being Arrogance and self-importance
- Disregarding the speed limit as a suggestion
- Thinking that breaking the speed limit is not a serious offence
- Thinking that they won’t get caught (too fast for the cops to catch them)
- Being contemptuous of safe / slower drivers
- Feeling pressured into keeping up with other drivers
Speeding has become such a societal norm that it is almost expected but doesn’t reading the above reasons for driving above the speed limit – spelt out in black and white – make you wonder if there is any real reason to do so?
One thing many motorists do not take into consideration is their inability to stop in time should they need to and this is probably the biggest cause of death on our roads. Surely the fatality rate could be drastically reduced if we drove slower, among other things of course. For those who need a gentle reminder to ease off the gas pedal, here are a 5-things to remember could save a life:
The faster you go, the harder you’ll hit: the force with which your car hits an object is much greater than the speed at which you would have been travelling at which could be the difference between life and death. Always be aware of the speed limit in the area you are driving in and consciously reduce it to be on the safe side.
Easy Does It: Keep a keen eye on your speedo or simply set the cruise control function if your car has it. Always assume there will be a pedestrian or cyclist in an area where they shouldn’t and drive defensively at all times.
Timing Is Critical: The number of cars on our roads is likely to increase monthly meaning traffic congestion is something we all have to accommodate. By giving yourself ample time to reach your destination one cuts down on the need to rush and or drive recklessly in an attempt to get to an appointment. Build in an extra 20 minutes to create a buffer for instances where the traffic lights don’t work or for traffic build up due to an accident.
Maintain Your Own Pace: Don’t get bullied into driving faster than you intended to just because you want to stay ahead of all the other cars on the road. Ignore those who drive above the limit and rather allow them to pass you. As long as you have time on your side there won’t be any reasonable need to drive any faster.
Your Car Has Safety Features which pedestrians don’t! Granted you bought your car because it has all the latest safety bells and whistles but always bear in mind that cyclists, children, dogs and trees do not have airbags or ABS.