To slow down. That’s the message the Kansas Department of Transportation is delivering to drivers this summer.
Sobering statistics tell the story of the dangers of speed. In 2020, Kansas recorded nearly 5,000 vehicle crashes due to drivers going too fast for conditions. Nearly 80 people lost their lives in these accidents.
“We have a lead foot problem in Kansas,” Transportation Secretary Julie Lorenz said. “Speed kills, which is why our law enforcement agencies work so hard to enforce speed limits. Please slow down. Please obey the posted speed limits.
The number of speeding citations issued on Kansas highways tends to increase. The Kansas Highway Patrol reports issuing 1,758 speeding tickets in 2019. In 2020, the number rose to 2,823 and in 2021 to 3,309.
KDOT Deputy Traffic Safety Bureau Chief Chris Bortz said the increasing number of citations issued for speeds over 100 mph is particularly alarming. The KHP issued 1,758 citations in 2019 for speeds of 100 mph or more. In 2020, the number of over 100 citations increased to 2,823 and in 2021 to 3,309.
Bortz said that over the past decade, Kansas has had 850 fatalities and nearly 23,000 speed-related injuries. He noted that a high percentage of speed-related crashes involve young drivers. Forty-five percent of all speeding-related fatalities in Kansas in 2020 were among drivers between the ages of 15 and 29.
This summer, KDOT and Kansas law enforcement are launching a “Drive to Zero” public awareness campaign to shed light on the far-reaching consequences of driving too fast for conditions. Besides the increased risk of losing control of the vehicle and not being stopped in time, higher speeds also increase the risk of motorists being seriously injured or killed.
“Drive To Zero” reminds motorists that speeding is against the law. The campaign encourages drivers to reduce their speed when approaching an exit/entrance ramp, around a curve, driving through construction zones or pulling a trailer, and to watch speeds in bad weather. time and night.
“Our goal is to save lives,” Bortz said. “Please join us in reminding all drivers to watch for and obey speed limit signs on our highways, in residential areas and on secondary roads.”
The Kansas Drive to Zero campaign is funded by federal highway safety funds administered by KDOT. For more information, visit KansasDriveToZero.org.
This is a public health issue that we hope all of our readers can support. Long stretches of open road can entice motorists to speed up, but our highways weren’t designed for that. For shorter trips here in town, it only takes a few minutes to get to your destination. It is also important to respect the speed zones of the city. And watch out for pedestrians and cyclists.