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IIHS review: Seattle people in much less personal injury crashes after speed limits lowered


Mar 30, 2023
IIHS study: Seattle residents in fewer injury crashes after speed limits lowered

Most states hire lower velocity restrictions in household spots to protect against collisions and pedestrian accidents, with limitations commonly among 25 and 35 mph. In 2016, Seattle commenced reducing some of its velocity boundaries from 30 to 25 mph on arterial streets and 25 to 20 mph in neighborhoods. That may seem like a bummer to car or truck enthusiasts, but the Coverage Institute for Highway Protection (IIHS) just lately published its review on the adjustments, discovering that drivers are fewer possible to be injured in a crash.

Decrease pace boundaries had a important impact on the likelihood that folks would be hurt in a crash. Following the pace limitations altered, the IIHS located that motorists experienced a 17 p.c reduced possibility of damage in the city’s downtown area. Items were even much better on arterial roads, the place motorists experienced a 20 per cent decreased likelihood of staying hurt.

In an previously examine that appeared at Seattle’s initial round of velocity reductions, the IIHS when compared 3 control metropolitan areas in Washington state wherever boundaries weren’t adjusted, vs. Seattle. By late 2019, Seattle had transformed the pace limits in a quarter of its important neighborhoods. Most crashes take place on arterial roads in all of the towns, but Seattle noticed a decline in crashes with accidents while management towns observed boosts.

Metropolis officers took detect of the review and, in 2020, reduced most of the remaining pace boundaries on arterial roadways to 25 mph. The work associated eradicating hundreds of previous velocity signals and replacing them with 2,600 new types. The new indicators are far more densely installed to assure all people knows about the improve.

While Seattle’s arterial roadways observed advancement, there ended up no variations in the chance of personal injury all through crashes on community streets and restricted downtown streets. The IIHS points out that the slender roads may well obviously limit drivers’ consolation with pace and mentioned that it could be achievable that areas with better signage saw extra enhancement.

“When we converse about the Safe Method technique, we generally pressure that no one ought to have to die because of a miscalculation,” explained IIHS President David Harkey. “These results illustrate the price of rethinking velocity boundaries. Crashes even now took place immediately after Seattle’s adjustments, but they weren’t as dangerous.”

“These effects propose that communities can enjoy considerable added benefits by reducing velocity limits,” stated IIHS Senior Exploration Transportation Engineer Wen Hu, the study’s direct writer. “To decrease injuries even even further, communities really should mix decreased pace limits with engineering options, community training about the great importance of lessened speeds, and higher-visibility enforcement.”



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