Although speed limits on most state roadways are set at the state maximum as required by Texas law, the maximum is not there as a symbol to encourage drivers to push the limit. Unfortunately, though, many drivers take advantage of these limits and operate under the assumption that it is acceptable to drive over those magic numbers. This mentality often results in careless collisions, needless injury, and, at times, tragic fatality.
Basis for Speed Limits
The state of Texas determines highway speed limits using what is known as the 85th percentile method. This method is based on an engineering principle that estimates the speed that a majority of drivers usually travel. It has been used for the past 60 years to set highway speed limits across the nation. These limits reflect speeds that drivers travel at or below, and they continue to be a country-wide standard.
Certain factors such as hills and curves, local crash history, and whether an area is residential or developed are also taken into consideration when deciding on any variation in speed limit, such as a drop of ten miles-per-hour or a five mile-per-hour spike. The Texas Department of Transportation reports that various studies have been done to demonstrate the effectiveness of this speed-setting method, emphasizing that there are certain disadvantages to setting speed limits below the 85th percentile speed.
Your Standard Vs. the State Standard
Considering the special attention the state gives to setting speed limits, it is worth examining our own speed on the highway. It often takes only a single vehicle to cause a speed-related accident. Comparing your speed to the lawful speed posted on the highways is an easy way to assess your current driving habits and prevent potential car crashes. If you often find yourself pushing the speed limit, remember that the Texas Department of Transportation reports that most crashes in the state are a result of speeding, and more than just automobile drivers are affected. Motorcyclists and pedestrians are also at high risk when just one vehicle ignores the state-enforced limit.
Some speed-related collisions are inevitable, regardless of how cautious we are out on the roads. If you are involved in a speed-related accident, speak with a competent New Braunfels car wreck attorney. Call the Bettersworth Law Firm at 830-443-9193 today for a free consultation.