Most people understand that as a car travels faster, it become more dangerous – the higher the speed, the greater amount of force exerted on an object in the event of a crash, be it a cyclist, pedestrian, or another vehicle.
Reducing the speed by just five or 10 miles per hour may reduce the force. According to an article published in TIME, a car that’s traveling 30 miles per hour and hits a pedestrian is eight times more likely to kill that pedestrian than is a car that’s traveling only 20 miles per hour. In an effort to make the city safer, there’s now a new NYC speed limit.
New Speed Limit in NYC in an Effort to Curb Fatalities
The new change for New York City was made on November 7, 2014. Now, the default speed limit in the city has been reduced to 25 miles per hour. Mayor Bill DeBlasio, who is concerned about the number of traffic fatalities every year in New York, implemented the new law. The change is part of his “Vision Zero” program, a program with goals of reducing the number of traffic fatalities each year in New York to zero.
Will other cities follow suit?
Traffic safety advocates hope that New York’s efforts will be mimicked by other cities around the nation, especially those where traffic fatalities are highest. More than 4,000 pedestrians are currently killed by cars each year in the U.S.; the NHTSA states that in 2012, the number was 4,743. If more cities begin lowering their speed limits, the number of pedestrian deaths could potentially decrease dramatically.
More Than Speed Limits Need Changing
While many have high hopes that the change in the New York City speed limit will reduce the number of traffic fatalities, most are also being realistic about the change, acknowledging that more than speed limits need to change.
In addition to slowing down, drivers also need to change their mindsets, noted John Whitelegg, a professor at the University of York, according to TIME. No one expects a change to happen overnight. Instead, reducing the number of fatalities in New York is an ongoing process, and one that will likely take years.
Injured in an accident as a pedestrian? Contact an Attorney
If you’ve been involved in a pedestrian accident in New York, you may be able to recover damages by filing a personal injury lawsuit against a negligent driver. To help you understand your recovery options, get help from the attorneys at Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. Call us today to schedule a free case consultation at 800-550-0000.