Surveyed Virginians admit they drive over speed limit

Posted at 11:55 AM, Dec 21, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-21 11:55:50-05

RICHMOND, Va. - A recent survey revealed that 96% admitted that they drive over the speed limit.

The survey was designed to gauge Virginians’ perspectives on varying highway safety topics as part of the Governor’s Executive Leadership Team on Highway Safety’s most recent #YourSayVA digital town hall.

The survey, focused on speeding, was taken this summer by more than 600 Virginians.

“We are grateful for the more than 600 Virginians who took the time to share their thoughts on the impact of speed on our roadways in our second #YourSayVA digital town hall,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran. “While speed continues to play a major role in crashes that claim hundreds of lives every year, the information collected through this town hall will help to better understand how such crashes can be prevented.”

The survey revealed that 96% of people sometimes speed while 43% speed “frequently” or “most of the time.” 31% rated speed as a “very serious” problem while 40% don’t think speed is a serious problem.

Virginians were also asked why they speed in the survey and 43% of respondents said they are following the speed of surrounding traffic, while 23% indicated that the posted speed limits seem too low.

For more than a decade, speed has been the leading factor in fatal crashes on Virginia roadways. Higher speeds make crashes more likely and deadlier because, as speed increases, so does the force of a crash.

In 2020, 22,479 speed-related crashes on Virginia roadways resulted in 406 fatalities, the highest number of fatalities in at least 10 years.

As of November 30, 417 speed-related fatalities have occurred - a 12% increase over the number of deaths last year at the same time.

“In the year 2021, we have already witnessed too many preventable traffic fatalities as a result of speeding,” said Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine. “Our highways are safer for everyone when drivers choose to follow speed limits. As thousands of Virginians prepare to travel for the holidays, I ask that we all remember that slowing down to the posted limit can save a life.”

Speeding is just one of the latest traffic-safety priority to be addressed by the Governor and his Executive Leadership Team on Highway Safety, which is composed of representatives from the Virginia Departments of Motor Vehicles, Transportation, Health, Education and State Police, and led by the Secretaries of Transportation and Public Safety and Homeland Security.

The team is meant to reducing fatalities on Virginia’s roadways and driving change in the Commonwealth’s highway safety culture.