Excess speed appears to have caused a fatal one-car accident in Orange County, Virginia (VA), on the night of April 16, 2014. The deadly wreck joins a depressingly growing trend in which speeding produces deadly consequences.
The crash occurred along Dublin Lane (State Route 608) near the intersection with Catharpin Road (State Route 606). A 15-year-old girl riding in the front seat lost her life when the car ran off the road while going through a tight curve and hit a tree. A 17-year-old female passenger in the back seat also suffered serious injuries requiring hospital treatment.
According to a report published in Culpeper's Star Exponent, the driver had not been drinking alcohol or using drugs. He did not get injured, and it was not immediately clear whether he would face criminal charges.
Distracted driving by teenagers draws much-deserved attention from law enforcement officials, policymakers, parents, teachers and all advocates of safe driving. But the dangers from going too fast should never be minimized. Statistics compiled for the Governors Highway Safety Association revealed that 33 percent, or 1 in 10, of all wrecks in which teenagers died during 2011 were caused, at least in part, by speeding. That percentage had increased from 30 percent in 2000.
All drivers must observe speed limits. Evidence shows that high schoolers -- new to the joys, responsibilities and risks of taking the wheel -- may need to be reminded of this as often as they currently get warned not to text and drive.