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State targeting speeders
Courier editorial
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Lead-footed drivers may finally be forced to start slowing down. Georgia’s new Super Speeder law took effect Friday, imposing an additional $200 fine on anyone convicted of driving faster than 75 on a two-lane road or 85 on a four-lane road anywhere in the state.
The fines will help fund the state’s trauma care system, which has been put under a strain by the high number of accidents in the state.
Whether it helps slow traffic down remains to be seen, but at least the state is starting to get serious about motorists who drive too fast and put others at risk.
And it’s a real problem. According to the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, excessive speed plays a part in one-third of all fatal crashes — and one-fourth of all deadly wrecks in construction zones. There is at least a death every day related to people who drive too fast. Three hundred and nine of the state’s 1,149 deaths in fatal wrecks in 2008 were speed-related.
What’s more, the state cites research showing Georgia has the highest illegal speeds in the Southeast while also noting that the force of impact doubles with every 10 mph increase in speed above 50.
But it shouldn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that the faster you go, the harder you’re going to hit something. Or that the faster you drive, the less time you have to react and possibly avoid a crash. It also makes it harder to stop, since the faster one goes the longer it takes to bring a vehicle to a stop.
For some reason, too many drivers don’t seem to get the message.
In 2005, nearly half the 89,101 speeding convictions in Georgia were for drivers who were running 15-20 mph over the limit — and we live in a state where driving 10 mph over isn’t even considered speeding. Thirteen percent of the convictions were for going 20 mph over the posted speed limit while another 11 percent were for motorists going 31-40 mph over, the GOHS says.  
Perhaps hitting these folks a little harder in the pocketbook will make them realize they aren’t above the law. It might also keep someone alive.
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