Essay prompt: The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reported a total of 9,262 people killed in 2014 due to speeding-related accidents. In order to eliminate the consequences of speeding, all strategies such as visible speed enforcement cameras should be considered. While many agree that the installation of visible speed enforcement cameras has increased the safety of drivers on the road, others have argued that these cameras can lead to dangerous traffic situations. Based on your research, do you support the installation of visible speed enforcement cameras? Why or why not?
Essay: Speeding is a dangerous driving behavior that plays a significant role in causing severe accidents. According to the NHTSA, in 2012 speeding resulted in 30 percent of fatal crashes and caused 10,219 lives to be lost . Speeding-related accidents also have a significant economic impact. The NHTSA estimated that speeding-related accidents cost society $40.4 billion per year . This information shows that a way of reducing the number of speeding-related accidents is an important action that could reduce accidents, lower the economic costs to society, and save lives. One solution to this problem is the installation of speed enforcement cameras that would deter drivers from speeding. Although there is some evidence supporting the effectiveness of speed enforcement cameras, some remain opposed to their installation and question whether their benefits outweigh their disadvantages. Some of the criticisms about speed enforcement cameras are their ineffectiveness in reducing speeding and their potential to increase dangerous driving conditions. This essay will show how speed enforcement cameras benefit society by reducing speed-related accidents and their negative impacts on society. In addition, this essay will show that speed enforcement cameras do not result in more dangerous driving conditions, how speed enforcement cameras can be made more effective.
Speed enforcement cameras can be used as an effective tool to reduce speeding and speeding-related accidents. Several studies of speed enforcement cameras have shown that these cameras can reduce accidents by 20 to 25 percent . A study of a section of a freeway in Scottsdale, Arizona has shown that speed enforcement cameras have resulted in many benefits. These include a 44 to 54 percent reduction in total target crashes, a 28 to 48 percent reduction in injury crashes, a 46 to 56 percent reduction in property damage only crashes, a 9 mph lower average speed, and a lower speed variance around the enforced zones . In addition, a 2010 study by Cochrane showed that speed enforcement cameras reduced average speeds by 1 to 15 percent and the number of total crashes by 8 to 49 percent . In New York City, speed enforcement cameras have reduced speeding during school hours by 63 percent . This data shows that speed enforcement cameras have created a noticeable reduction in the number of accidents and even lower the average speed and variance of speed of vehicles. A study about the economic impact of speed enforcement cameras showed a benefit of $16.5 to $17.1 million per year, as well as a reduction in all types of accidents . This shows that speed enforcement cameras positively impact the economy by reducing costs related to accidents. Speed enforcement cameras are effective at reducing the average speed of vehicles and the number of accidents, and benefit society by reducing the economic impact of speed-related accidents and by saving lives.
Although this data strongly supports the effectiveness of speed enforcement cameras in reducing speeding and speeding-related accidents, there are some criticisms about speed enforcement cameras. One criticism is that speed enforcement cameras are not really effective. However, the data in the previous paragraph shows that speed enforcement cameras achieve their goals of reducing speeding and speeding-related accidents. Another important criticism about speed enforcement cameras is their potential to increase dangerous driving conditions. These dangerous driving conditions are a result of drivers suddenly braking around speed enforcement cameras to avoid receiving a speeding ticket. This is a reasonable concern about the disadvantages about speed enforcement cameras. One possible solution to this problem is by using mobile speed enforcement cameras mounted on police vehicles. These vehicles with speed enforcement cameras could be placed on roads with a high incidence of speeding and/or speeding-related accidents. These vehicles would be on these roads at random times so that drivers cannot possibly expect them, and the cameras could be hidden so that drivers who see these police vehicles will not suddenly brake. As a result of these cameras being hidden and placed on these roads at random times, drivers will not suddenly brake because they will not expect these speed enforcement cameras. This will eliminate dangerous driving conditions resulting from drivers suddenly braking. In addition, due to the unexpectedness of the location and times of these speed enforcement cameras, drivers will have an incentive to drive more safely and obey the speed limits at all times in order to avoid receiving speeding tickets. This would effectively lower speeding and speeding-related accidents.
Speed enforcement cameras are one solution to reduce speeding and speeding-related accidents. Studies have shown that speed enforcement cameras can reduce the number of speeding-related accidents, the average and variance of speeds, and the economic impact of speeding-related accidents. As a result, speed enforcement cameras can save lives and make roads a safer place to drive by lowering the number of speeding-related accidents. Although it is possible for speed enforcement cameras to encourage dangerous driving conditions by causing drivers to suddenly brake in order to avoid speeding tickets, mobile speed enforcement cameras would eliminate this problem. Mobile speed enforcement cameras would be relatively well hidden and used at random times. This would prevent drivers from expecting these speed enforcement cameras and result in them driving more safely and obeying the speed limit to avoid speeding tickets. Speeding can cause severe accidents, endanger drivers, and have negative economic impacts on society, and speed enforcement cameras can reduce these problems. Speed enforcement cameras are an effective way to make driving safer by resulting in noticeable reductions in the speed of drivers and the number of speeding-related accidents.