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Law Enforcement Officers From Six States Join Forces to Combat Speeding

(COLUMBUS, Ohio) - Law enforcement officers across Ohio are joining officers from five other Great Lakes states including Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin on July 27 for this year’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Region 5 high visibility Speed Awareness Day enforcement campaign.

During the campaign, law enforcement officers will combine increased, zero-tolerance enforcement with effective communication to road users on the importance of obeying the speed limit. High Visibility Enforcement (HVE) is a proven countermeasure for reinforcing driver compliance with posted speed limits.

“There is no question that high speeds are dangerous, and we must continue to reinforce the importance of following the speed limit,” said Ohio Governor Mike DeWine. “During this enforcement event, law enforcement throughout Ohio will be keeping a close watch on speeds in an effort to prevent crashes and save lives.”

Speed is involved in about one-third of all motor vehicle fatalities nationwide. NHTSA statistical projections for 2021 show traffic deaths grew by 10.5% to 42,915. This also represents the highest number of fatalities since 2005 and the highest annual percentage increase in the recorded history of data in the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS).

According to crash statistics from Ohio in 2021:

  • 11% of all crashes were speed-related
  • 360 people died on Ohio's roadways in speed-related crashes
  • 1,549 people were seriously injured (that's more than 4 people per day)
  • 32% of Ohio's speed-related crashes occurred between June and September

In 2021, there were 5,413 fatal injuries in the six-state region with 1,668 (30.8%) being speed-related fatalities. This was an increase of 17.7% from 2020. Ohio ranks second in the six-state region with 1,351 total fatalities, an increase of 9.8% from the previous year. Traffic crashes that result in death due to speeding are higher in the summer months. The highest fatalities occur between June and September. Speeding is more than just breaking the law. The consequences include:

  • Greater potential for loss of vehicle
  • Reduced effectiveness of occupant protection
  • Increased stopping distance after the driver perceives a
  • Increased degree of crash severity leading to more severe
  • Economic implications of a speed-related crash.
  • Increased fuel consumption/cost.

“One of the most concerning aspects of speeding is the increased stopping distance,” said Ohio Department of Public Safety Director Tom Stickrath, who serves as chair of the Ohio Traffic Safety Council. “A vehicle traveling at 30 mph will need about 100 feet to come to a complete stop. In comparison, a car moving at 60 mph will need over 300 feet to stop, which is almost the entire length of a football field.”

According to NHTSA, drivers who speed are also more likely to engage in other risky behaviors, such as not wearing a seat belt, drinking and driving, or using a cell phone while driving.

Last year, the Ohio Traffic Safety Office distributed $4.1 million in NHTSA funding for overtime costs associated with HVE.

For more information, please visit http://speedawarenessday.org/.