Maplewood recently witnessed the type of horrific car accident that is becoming all too common on New Jersey roads. Prior to the fatal collision, the young driver tore through the town in his brand-new Chrysler 200, busting through a stop sign in the otherwise quiet residential neighborhood. The driver’s perilous race to nowhere ended when he broadsided another vehicle, launching the other driver and one of his passengers onto a nearby lawn, causing injuries to which they eventually lost their lives.
How unsafe is excessive speed?
As the fatalities in the Maplewood crash illustrate, excessive speed is extremely dangerous and remains a contributing factor in many accidents in New Jersey. New Jersey is said to have the nation’s second-worst drivers, not least of all because of disregard for safe rates of speed and basic traffic rules.
More than 30 percent of all fatal crashes are related to speed, according to estimates by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), and these crashes claim the lives of more than 13,000 people each year. Speeding is not only physically dangerous, but car crashes involving this risky driving practice cost more than $40 billion every year. This means that every minute a driver saves by speeding costs the nation more than $76,000.
Do higher speeds mean heavier penalties when drivers are caught?
The short answer to this question is yes. New Jersey uses a system in which drivers are assessed points on their licenses for moving violations, the accumulation of which results in license suspension. Points are assigned as follows:
- Two points: Up to 14 miles per hour above the speed limit
- Four points: 15 to 29 miles per hour above the speed limit
- Five points: More than 30 miles per hour above the speed limit
When drivers are collared for excessive speed, they often also receive a ticket for reckless driving, which adds five points to the points for the speeding infraction.
Individuals who have been injured because of the excessive speed of other drivers should seek the assistance of experienced lawyers. Hoffman DiMuzio has the knowledge and experience to handle any personal injury case.