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Law enforcement agencies stepping up speed enforcement

Highway cars driving
Posted at 10:01 AM, Nov 30, 2021

MICHIGAN — More than 100 municipal, county and Michigan State Police law enforcement agencies will focus on speeding drivers over the coming months, the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning announced Tuesday.

Agencies across the country have reported a rise in speeding and fatal crashes despite a decrease in the number of road miles traveled.

Though Michigan has seen a 22% reduction in traffic crashes – 245,432 in 2020 compared to 314,377 in 2019 – there has been an increase in fatalities.

Crash data from the MSP Criminal Justice Information Center shows more than 1,000 people died from crashes on Michigan roads in 2020, up from 985 in 2019.

In 2020, there were 200 speed-related fatalities on Michigan roads compared to 185 in 2019.

That’s why authorities plan to step up speed enforcement between Dec. 1 and Feb. 28, 2022.

“Despite the face there have been less miles traveled, the fatality rate rose,” OHSP Director Michael L. Prince said. “And crash data shows that speed may have been a factor in many of these preventable crashes. It’s no secret the faster you drive, the greater your risk of dying in a crash. We hope increased enforcement over the coming months will help change these dangerous driving behaviors and save lives.”

A crash on a road with a speed limit of 65 miles per hours or greater is more than twice as likely to result in a fatal crash than a crash on a road with a speed limit of 45-50 miles per hours, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

According to the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, in Michigan during 2020:

  • Of male drivers involved in all traffic crashes, 6.4% were speeding. 
  • 15.2% of motorcycle operators involved in fatal crashes were speeding. 
  • 11.2% of drivers aged 15-20 involved in crashes were speeding. 
  • Out of all drivers who were drinking in crashes, 15.1% were speeding. 

The campaign is supported by federal traffic safety funds.