I hate to be so blunt, but ever since I attended one of those Bike Safety Workshops, I can’t stop thinking about two things.
- The difference of a mere 10mph in a car (which is barely perceptible), can mean a vast difference in the fatality rate if that car strikes a biker or walker.
- Cops seem to “allow” at least a 10 mph cushion on the posted speed limit before giving a ticket.
There was something upsetting to me about those two thoughts hitting my head at the same time.
To illustrate how important it is to drive slowly (especially on neighborhood streets), I’ve posted a slide from the City of Portland’s traffic division. It lists the effects of speed on stopping distance shows fatality and injury rate for each speed. How can the police can justify allowing motorists to go 10-15 miles over the posted speed limit when the numbers in the chart below make it painfully obvious that people die as a result?
Maybe someone from the Portland Police Bureau or the city traffic engineering office can enlighten me.
[click the image to enlarge]