police officer looking at the driver license of a woman pulled over for speeding

A recent study that looked into 300,144 traffic stops in all 39 Rhode Island communities over an 18-month period found that an overwhelming number of traffic stops are for speeding. The study, conducted by the Northeastern University Institute on Race and Justice looked at traffic stops between Jan. 1, 2013 and May 31, 2014. Granted, the study focused on racial profiling, but it also came up with a number of interesting findings.

Study Highlights

woman pulled over for speedingOverall, in Rhode Island, male drivers are twice as likely to be stopped. The study also found that speeding is the biggest reason for traffic stops. The state’s most populated five cities reported the highest number of stops. Police in North Providence, Woonsocket, Lincoln, Providence and Tiverton made the lowest number of stops.

In communities such as Cumberland, 20 percent of traffic stops were for an equipment or inspection violation and 5 percent for unbuckled seatbelts. In Woonsocket, seatbelt violations account for a majority of the stops. In communities such as Foster and Glocester, 80 percent of stops are for speeding. The report also notes that Rhode Island State Police almost always issue a citation to a driver they stop – about 89 percent of the time. That percentage varies for other police departments.

The Dangers of Speeding

car accident caused by speedingSpeeding also leads to a number of car accidents in Middletown and in Rhode Island overall. Rhode Island’s Basic Speed Rule states: “No person shall drive a vehicle at a speed greater than is reasonable and prudent under the conditions and having regard to the actual and potential hazards then existing.” In addition to sticking to speed limits, drivers are required to operate their vehicles at a “reasonable” speed, taking into consideration factors such as roadway, traffic and weather conditions at the time. It is also illegal under Rhode Island law, to race on a public roadway.

In an accident involving a speeding vehicle, the injuries also tend to be much more severe. Often speeding vehicles veer out of control and out of their lanes causing devastating head-on or T-bone collisions. These accidents could result in catastrophic injuries such as traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord trauma, internal organ damage and broken bones.

Compensation for Victims and Families

personal injury lawyer meeting clients injured from a speeding accidentDriving at an excessive rate of speed or unsafe rate of speed is negligent driving. If you have been injured in a Middletown car accident caused by a speeding driver, you can seek compensation for damages including medical expenses, lost wages, hospitalization, rehabilitation, permanent injuries, disabilities, pain and suffering and emotional distress. If you have lost a loved one in an accident involving a speeding driver, you can file a wrongful death claim against the at-fault party seeking compensation for your significant losses.

Victims or families of deceased victims in such cases would be well advised to contact an experienced Middletown auto accident lawyer who will analyze all facets of the incident and ensure that the negligent parties are held liable and that victims receive fair and full compensation for all their losses.


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