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How dangerous is speeding?

You've broken the speed limit before. It feels like everyone does. Maybe you were late for work. Maybe you were on a long road trip, and you knew that setting your cruise control slightly above the speed limit would shave off some time. Maybe you just didn't see the road sign, and you were not sure what the speed limit was.

For whatever reason, you've broken the limit. You don't think it's a big deal. Is it?

It is, according to the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), speeding takes nearly as many lives in traffic accidents every year as driving under the influence.

Everyone -- even those who do it anyway -- knows that drunk driving is dangerous. No one thinks of it as something that poses the same risk as speeding. However, the statistics paint a bleak picture.

From 2005 to 2014, the years spanned in the NTSB study, speeding contributed to over 100,000 deaths. Further, most drivers break the speed limit by about seven or eight miles per hour.

That may not sound like much, but it definitely increases stopping distances and decreases reaction times for drivers. Both of these things can cause accidents. Additional speed also increases the odds of serious injuries, so an accident may become fatal when it would not have been if the cars had been following the limit at the time of the crash.

Have you lost a loved one in an accident with a speeding driver? If so, make sure you know what rights you may have to financial compensation after the crash.

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