Are More People Speeding On Michigan Roads?
The 'Stay At Home' mandate means less time in the car, but it seems were making the most of it by putting the pedal to the metal.
I noticed it again Monday morning when I was turning from a stop sign on Plainfield while riding my bike in. It seemed I had more than enough time to make the turn, but man, that car got up to me fast, and it was closer than I would have liked.
And then I realized why. That guy in the Honda was clocking at a pretty good clip when he whizzed by me, going at least 20 mph over the speed limit.
It's not the first time I noticed the speed limit being fractured by local drivers. The newly found space we've found on local roads has meant an excuse to feel the need for speed.
Is it just me noticing the higher rates of speed? A little Google searching yielded me some proof it's not.
Tyson Fisher at Landline Media has written about the phenomenon, citing Governors Highway Safety Associations numbers, indicating more speeding tickets are being issued in some states during quarantine.
Some states are experiencing a surge in speeds at 100 mph or more. Police in Colorado, Indiana, Nebraska and Utah have clocked motorists driving over 100 mph. In Florida and Iowa, law enforcement is reporting motorists driving 20-40 mph over the posted speed limit.
Normally, speeding results in more death, but with no one else on the road, the accident death rate has dove dramatically in the past month.
Wes Guckert, president and CEO of The Traffic Group, a traffic data collection group, told WTOP News in Washington DC:
“A lot of people are driving crazy and so then what happens is that accidents occur and in today’s environment of COVID-19, the more people you send to the hospital, the less opportunity there is for doctors to be dealing with this virus.”
“Think about yourself, think about your family, think about your children think about what it would be if you ended up killing somebody because you took advantage of the low speeds and traffic.”
CNN is also reporting statistics from the aforementioned GHSA, proving there are more people driving over 100 mph than before the shutdown.
Locally, MLive.com recently posted a story about how some Michigan law enforcement agencies have relaxed enforcement during the mandated shut down, with Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard admitting it's more about keeping his officers healthy than letting people free wheel:
“If you see an expired license plate, that by itself -- unless you’ve got some other reason -- isn’t necessarily something we want to pull a car over for,” Bouchard told Mlive. “First, the Secretary of State’s offices are closed. Second, for something that’s minor we don’t necessarily want to expose us to them and them to us. Under the current circumstances, as it relates to very minor traffic enforcement, we’ve encouraged people to make those kinds of discretionary choices.”
So enjoy your new found ability to go faster, but be smart and be careful out there.