This report examines the effect of the national 55 mph speed limit on highway safety in the United States. Fatality rates and injury rates since the enactment of the speed limit are compared to projected fatality and injury rates based on pre-speed limit data. This comparison is made for nationwide data on various highway systems and for a representative sample of 17 states. Additionally, factors such as pedestrian fatalities, age of driver in fatal accidents, time of fatal accidents and type of vehicle involved are studied. The conclusion of the report is that fatalities per hundred million vehicle miles of travel have been reduced by the enactment of the speed limit, but injuries per hundred million vehicle miles of travel have not. The data do not, however, permit a precise numerical estimate of how much of the reduction in the fatality rate is due to the speed reduction.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Pennsylvania State University, University Park

    Pennsylvania Transportation Institute, Transportation Research Building
    University Park, PA  United States  16802
  • Authors:
    • HEckand, R F
    • Pachuta, J A
    • HAIGHT, F A
  • Publication Date: 1976-11

Media Info

  • Features: Appendices; Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 164 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00158078
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Federal Highway Administration
  • Report/Paper Numbers: FHWA-RD-76-191 Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-FH-11-8597
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Oct 13 1977 12:00AM