One article sparked a massive debate online after advocating for the National Highway Safety Administration (NHSA) to limit some drivers’ need for speed.
A closer look, however, reveals that this controversial speed-limiting technology could be a key to saving lives — and consumers may already be happily using it with other modes of transportation.
As David Zipper detailed for Fast Company, a deadly crash in North Las Vegas in 2022 prompted an investigation by the National Transportation Safety Board, which found that the driver responsible had drugs and alcohol in his system, as well as a history of speeding.
The NTSB then recommended that automakers put speed-limiting tech in all U.S. vehicles. According to data from the NHTSA, 28% of all fatal crashes involved speed, and more than a quarter-million people were injured in speed-related crashes in 2021.
The European Union is requiring all new cars to have speed-limiting tech beginning in 2024, as reported by Fast Company.
“Smart speed limiting and geofencing for cars would save thousands of lives [per] year,” a user on X, formerly known as Twitter, said in a repost of the Fast Company article, pointing out that certain shared e-bikes and scooters are already prevented from going faster than 20 mph.
In addition to saving lives on the road, the speed-limiting technology may be able to make a positive impact on our planet by reducing the amount of heat-trapping gases linked to rising global temperatures, severe weather events, and health concerns such as asthma.
Passenger cars can create 3.5 billion tons of carbon pollution annually. While speed isn’t the only factor to consider, the Natural Resources Defense Council noted that drivers who “average in the 80s or 90s emit more carbon due to engine strain and aerodynamic inefficiencies.”
“We should make this [speed-limiting tech] mandatory on highways at least,” another person on X suggested. “Speed would no longer be an issue, we could probably increase the current speed limit, while making better use of road space.”
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