Some 40-50% of drivers drive faster than the recommended speed limit and 10-20% exceed the limit by more than 10 kph. Does this matter? Yes – speed is a factor in around 30% of all fatal accidents. Speed limits are in place for a reason – they tell drivers what speed is safe for the road they are on.
What are the risks?
If you drive too fast, you put yourself and other road-users at risk.
Higher risk of accident
- You have less control over the car
- It is more difficult to react to prevent an accident
Injury or death
- The higher the speed on impact, the more damage to the vehicles, obstacles and people involved – the human body is very vulnerable in a collision
- The risk is higher still for those in light vehicles, or those who are unprotected, such as cyclists and pedestrians
- Vary for urban, rural and high-speed roads
- Different from one EU country to the next
- Lower for lorries and coaches in some countries
- Balance safety and travel time
- Also used to cut air pollution and noise
Weather and traffic
- If visibility is reduced – due to rain, fog, snow or smog – reduce your speed
- France has lower speed limits for bad weather. In other countries, use common sense