Speeding remains one of the leading contributing factors in motor vehicle fatalities each year across the United States. In Colorado specifically, unnecessary speed plays a role in about one-third of all deadly vehicle crashes annually. Understanding the risks of speeding and how it increases crash severity can help reduce needless injuries and deaths on Colorado’s roadways. A Denver personal injury lawyer can help after a preventable Colorado crash.
How Speeding Increases Crash Risk
There are a few reasons why speeding in Colorado is so inherently dangerous when behind the wheel. As speed increases:
- The driver’s peripheral vision decreases significantly. When vehicles are traveling faster, drivers have a narrower view of the road around them and less time to react and brake.
- The vehicle’s stopping distance lengthens dramatically. For example, a vehicle traveling 70 mph needs over 650 feet to fully stop – over 4.5 football fields of distance. Unsafe speeds provide inadequate space and time to slow down and avoid a crash.
- The impact force during a collision increases exponentially. When two cars hit each other, even small increases in speed can mean much stronger crash forces. This makes injuries more likely and more severe.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), a person is more than twice as likely to die in a crash involving speeds over 80 mph compared to under 50 mph speeds. And Colorado State Patrol crash data reveals about 220 people die in speed-related crashes in Colorado every year.
Real-World Speeding Crashes and Consequences
While these statistics highlight the inherent hazards of speeding, real-world examples further demonstrate how deadly driving over speed limits can prove on Colorado highways, roads, and streets:
- In October 2022, two pickup trucks collided at high speeds in Larimer County, ejecting and instantly killing both young drivers. Police confirmed speed was a primary contributing factor.
- Earlier last year, Denver Police reported that 40 percent of all deadly traffic crashes in the city involved motorists exceeding speed limits, reiterating speed’s role in escalating crash severity.
- A tragic triple-fatal crash occurred in Douglas County in 2021 when an SUV crossed the median at a high rate of speed, hitting a pickup and killing three young teenagers.
Typical Injuries Sustained in High-Speed Car Crashes
High-speed crashes can result in severe injuries due to immense force and impact.
- Traumatic brain injuries, including concussions or skull fractures, are common, affecting cognitive abilities and causing long-term impairment.
- Spinal injuries like fractures or herniated discs can lead to paralysis or lifelong mobility issues.
- Chest and abdominal trauma result from the body’s collision with the steering wheel or dashboard, causing rib fractures, organ damage, or internal bleeding.
- Extremity injuries such as fractures, dislocations, or traumatic amputations occur due to the abrupt impact, often requiring extensive surgeries and rehabilitation.
Whiplash, burns, and psychological trauma further compound the aftermath of high-speed collisions.
The severe outcomes highlighted above provide real evidence of speeding leading to avoidable deaths on Colorado roadways. Beyond deadly consequences, speeders also face legal penalties if ticketed, including fines up to $1000 and license suspension for repeated offenses.
By slowing down to reasonable speeds, motorists can save lives – including their own.
We have offices in 32 locations and 19 states, including Colorado, Virginia, and Pennsylvania. Call now for a free consultation on (888) 477-0597 if you’ve been hurt in an accident involving a speeding driver.