Speeding may have led to a tragic car accident this week when a vehicle drove off the road and was struck by an Amtrak train. The collision claimed the driver's life. Shortly after 9 p.m., the driver of a 1997 Honda sedan attempted to merge left on the San Diego Freeway. At the same time, another vehicle was attempting to move right into that same lane. The Honda swerved violently to the right and flew off the shoulder of the road. The car fell onto railroad tracks where it was struck head-on by a train traveling an estimated 65 to 70 miles per hour. The vehicle was cut in half and the driver was ejected from the car by the force of the collision. He died at the scene.
Prior to going off the road, the driver was travelling "at a high rate of speed in and out of traffic," according to a California Highway Patrol officer. That speeding may have been involved in a fatal car accident is hardly a surprise. According to a report from the Governors Highway Safety Association, speeding is involved in one out of every three highway fatalities. That means more than 10,000 deaths every year involve people driving too fast.
In the two decades since the national speed limit of 55 miles per hour was repealed, most states have increased the top allowable speeds to 65 or 70 mph. Raising the speed limit has done little to reduce the number of people who choose to drive faster than is allowed. Aggressive driving behaviors such as tailgating and speeding are a danger to the offending drivers and to those who share the road with them. The consequences of driving too quickly can be catastrophic.
Source: KFMB-TV 8, "Man killed in car accident involving Amtrak train," 9 September 2013