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Speeding doesn’t always kill: brain injuries can change your life forever

News Release

Speeding doesn’t always kill: brain injuries can change your life forever

Motor vehicle collisions account for more than one quarter of serious brain injuries in Alberta.

Speed Campaign June 2015

This month, Alberta’s Office of Traffic Safety is focusing on speed.

“It is staggering that more than one quarter of all traumatic brain injuries in Alberta are due to traffic collisions. These life altering events are entirely preventable. Albertans of all ages need to slow down on our roads and highways to prevent needless tragedy.”

Brian Mason, Minister of Transportation

Between 2009 and 2013, 467 people were killed and 12,036 people were injured in speed-related collisions in Alberta. Traffic collisions are the second leading cause of brain injuries.

“Speed doesn’t always kill in a crash, but it often hurts someone. Speed and distracted driving combined together is often deadly. My own brain injury was caused by a driver who was speeding, distracted and running a red light.”

Dr. Garnet Cummings, Executive Director, Brain Care Centre

“Speed-related brain injuries are tragic, because they are preventable. They can dramatically change the course of your life and the lives of your family members – who may have to live with the consequences of your actions for the rest of their lives.”

Dr. James Talbot, Chief Medical Officer of Health

Speed Facts

  • Motor vehicle collisions were the second leading cause (after falls) of head injury hospital admissions and accounted for 27
    per cent of brain injuries with an average of 602 hospital admissions each year.
  • On average, 425 men are treated for head injuries caused by motor vehicle collisions each year.
  • On average, 177 women are treated for head injuries caused by motor vehicle collisions each year.
  • In 2013, 26.6 per cent of fatal collisions involved a driver travelling at an unsafe speed.
  • Between 2009 and 2013, 467 people were killed and 12,036 were injured in collisions involving unsafe speed.
  • A vehicle travelling at 50 km/h takes 37 metres to stop, while one moving at 110 km/h needs 126 metres to stop, more than three times the distance.
  • Speeding reduces the effectiveness of seatbelts and other safety devices such as air bags and side impact beams.
  • Demerits for speeding range from two points (exceeding the posted limit by less than 15 km/h) to six points (exceeding the posted limit by more than 50 km/h).
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