- There are several ways to prove that an at-fault driver was speeding at the time of a car accident in which you or a loved one were injured.
As the old saying goes, “Speed kills.” And, as you already know, speeding can also be the cause of motor vehicle accident injuries ranging from minor to very serious. If you have been injured in an accident, or a loved one was hit and killed, how do you prove that speeding by the at-fault driver was the cause?
- Data can be downloaded from the onboard electronic systems found in most modern cars
- Onboard video from commercial vehicles (many large trucks) can be used to prove speeding
- GPS data from onboard electronics or communication systems
- Point-to-point GPS data or delivery schedules
- Eyewitness testimony
How can you prove that another driver was speeding?
Often, an at-fault driver will deny that he or she was speeding. Or, an insurance adjuster may try to blame you or your driver for failing to avoid an accident. In these, and other, situations you may want to prove that the at-fault driver was speeding at the time of the wreck.
Data from onboard electronic devices: Certain data is being recorded by most modern cars at all times while the vehicle is in operation. This data may make it possible to prove that the other driver was speeding at the time of the collision. After a severe crash, it may be wise to ask the other driver and their insurance company or lawyer to preserve the data recorded by a vehicles electronic data recorder (EDR), or “black box.” Data that is frequently contained in the EDR includes speed prior to and at the time of impact, whether the driver hit the brakes, accelerator and brake pedal use, steering input and seat belt use. This can be valuable information used in proving your case.
Note that as of 2019 some states have enacted laws prohibiting, with certain exceptions, the download of data from event data recorders without the permission of the vehicle owner. Downloading black box data is usually accomplished using special tools from the car’s diagnostic link detector (DLC).
Onboard video from dash cameras: Some drivers use dash cam recorders that may show the speed of the vehicle at the time of the crash. This is still somewhat rare with private individuals, but more and more commercial vehicles and trucking companies are using dash cameras. After a crash with a commercial vehicle or if you suspect a private person was using a dash camera recorder, it may be a good idea to send a request to the at-fault driver and their insurance company to preserve any video recordings.
GPS data: There have been some reports around the country of efforts to use GPS data to defend speeding tickets. Another way of using GPS data may not directly prove speeding, but if a GPS data logger shows that a driver could not have driven between two cities or way points without exceeding the speed limit, this could be evidence of negligent driving or supervision, as in the case of truck drivers and trucking companies.
Eyewitnesses: Although the Georgia Court of Appeals in Brown v. Dekalb County recently ruled that a lay witness may not give an opinion about speed based solely on her perception of how the impact felt, it has long been the Rule in Georgia that an eyewitness can give an opinion that a car or truck was speeding, provided a proper foundation is laid. For example, in Rentz v. Collins, the Court held that when the speed estimate was based on the witnesses familiarity with the speed of vehicles when moving and the way his car was dragged, he was allowed to give an opinion that the defendant was speeding.
Speeding or Other Forms of Aggressive Driving in Georgia
Georgia law defines speeding as “exceeding the posted speed limit” and/or as “driving too fast for conditions, or racing.” It is a dangerous driving behavior that has consistently been a major factor in about one-third of traffic fatalities.
In a 2012 report, the GHSA says “speeding — and to a somewhat lesser extent — aggressive driving, are committed by almost all drivers on occasion.” Speeding continues to be a problem on our nation’s roads, the report says, because “few advocates exist for speed reduction; speeding is a behavior that many people engage in routinely.”
The NHTSA says speeding is a component of the broader problem of “aggressive driving,” which is defined as “committing a combination of moving traffic offenses so as to endanger other persons or property.” For example:
- Driving faster than the speed limit
- Tailgating or following another vehicle too closely
- Unsafe, reckless, or erratic changes of lane
- Not using turn signals properly
- Not obeying traffic signs or other traffic signals or traffic control devices
Georgia lawmakers have taken a strong stand against excessive speed on state highways. The state’s maximum speed limits for cars and trucks are 55 mph on urban interstates, 70 mph on rural interstates and 65 mph on other limited access roads. Georgia’s “Super Speeder Law” adds $200 to fines imposed on any driver convicted of speeding at a rate that exceeds 75 mph on any two-lane road or faster than 85 mph on a multiple-lane road anywhere in the state.
Still, Georgia drivers continue to choose to speed.
The 2012 CASI Report (Crash Analysis Statistics) from the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety says that Georgia law enforcement personnel issued 419,000 citations for speeding in 2009. Meanwhile, there were 238 speed-related fatalities in Georgia in 2009, 19 percent of all fatal crashes in the state.
Compensation for Georgia Speeding Accident Victims
Georgia law says the party that causes a car accident has to bear the costs that arise from the crash. This includes payments for medical expenses, property damage and lost income of those injured as well as damages for pain and suffering and, in fatalities, damages to the deceased’s survivors for a wrongful death.
Insurance firms exist to make a profit. When they seek to protect their profits by denying or making low offers to settle claims, you need the help of an experienced attorney such as those at the Millar Law Firm. We can help you to obtain the compensation you deserve by negotiating with the insurance carrier or pursuing a personal injury or wrongful death lawsuit on your behalf.
How can the Millar Law Firm help you today?
Don’t let the insurance company for the at-fault driver minimize your injury case. Our accident reconstruction experts can help obtain the data necessary to reconstruct what happened and prove that the driver that hit you was speeding.
Excessive speed is a factor in about one-third of traffic fatalities, according to national studies. More than 10,500 individuals lost their lives in speed-related crashes in the U.S. in 2010, according to NHTSA — The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. In Georgia, approximately 2 in 10 fatal wrecks happen due to excessive speed. (Georgia GOHS).
When a speeding driver causes a car accident, he or she may be liable to the victim(s) for all harms — medical and financial — drivers or passengers suffer because of that driver’s decisions. The Atlanta speeding accident lawyers at the Millar Law Firm stand up for those who have been injured through no fault of their own in Georgia car accidents.
If you’ve been hurt in an accident caused by a driver who exceeded the speed limit, contact the lawyers at the Millar Law Firm today through our online contact form or at 700-400-0000 to learn more about how we can help you. We can provide you with a free initial consultation.
Get Help from an Atlanta Speeding Accident Lawyer Today
If you or a loved one has been injured in a Georgia car accident blamed on speeding or another form of aggressive driving, the experienced Atlanta speeding accident lawyers and South Atlanta’s car accident experts at the Millar Law Firm can help you. You may have a right to compensation for medical expenses, property damage, lost income and your pain and suffering. Contact us now at 770-400-0000 or through our online contact form for a free evaluation of your case.