According to the Wisconsin Department of Transportation (WisDOT), 601 people died in automotive traffic collisions in 2021. The increase in deaths per year is rising at a record rate per the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Authorities claim that speed and recklessness contribute to the majority of these crashes. Not only are these driving behaviors leading to more people dying in car collisions, but the number of people seriously injured and pedestrians killed has risen too.
What is reckless driving versus speeding?
Driving over the posted speed limit is against the law. According to WisDOT, in 2021, more than 27% of all citations were for speeding. On the other hand, recklessness is a broad term used to identify drivers behaving negligently, sometimes in addition to speeding. Some examples of recklessness are:
- Running red lights intentionally
- Texting while driving
- Driving after consuming alcohol or marijuana
- Joyriding, racing and road rage
- Driving on the side of the road, into oncoming traffic or passing in unsafe zones
How can the state decrease the number of collisions caused by speeders and reckless drivers?
While fines, loss of driving privileges and prison time may deter some speeders and reckless drivers, the state wants to do more to prevent people from driving irresponsibly. Recent measures include:
- Impounding unregistered vehicles if cited for reckless driving
- Lowering speed limits in cities around the state
- Increasing the availability of teen driving classes
- Creating protected bike and pedestrian travel lanes
- Improving the flow of traffic in congested areas
By slowing down and driving responsibly, you can avoid contributing to the rising death rates associated with speeding and reckless driving.