This effort to determine if the goal of the 55 mph speed limit is being attained, and if the accident reductions justify the retention of the same, involved the investigation of the accident volume, speed and speed enforcement data on limited access highways with prior speed limits in excess of 55 mph. The study also evaluated the accident volume, speed and enforcement data on uncontrolled or land service highways with prior speed limits of 55 mph or less. The study results are tabulated or graphically represented. It was found that on limited access roads, a sharp decrease in accidents occurred in the crisis period, with a further decrease in the year following. However, on land service roads, although injury and fatal accidents experienced the same downward trends, the total accidents are returning to precrisis levels. An increase in travel on limited access highways and a decrease in travel on uncontrolled roads are also noted. It appears that the significant accident reductions on limited access roads are due to the reduction in operating speeds. Other factors which have contributed to accident reduction are: change in attitude toward driving brought on by the energy crisis and economic conditions; and the substantial emphasis and investment in highway safety focused upon the driver, the vehicle, and the highway.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Institute of Traffic Engineers

    2029 K Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20006
  • Publication Date: 1977-2

Media Info

  • Features: Figures; Tables;
  • Pagination: p. 21-28
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00149360
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 15 1977 12:00AM