Speeding – What Does It Get You and What Are the Risks

by Wally Parke

Speeding tickets are obviously a bad thing for a professional drivers driving record, drivers know that, but yet they take the chance anyway. Or the claim is made by the driver that they did not see the speed limit sign, and did not know the speed limit was decreasing. A professional driver should know through experience where they are, such as coming into an urban area and more than likely the speed limit will go down. Again experience. Being aware and paying attention at all times, and being on the lookout for speed limit signs. That is part of the job.

Speeding increases the chance of crashes. Don’t take the chance! Also increases maintenance costs. Wastes fuel.

Speeding tickets have a negative effect on the company as well. Under Compliance, Safety and Accountability, or CSA as you probably know it by, speeding tickets and warnings will make a company’s Unsafe Driving category score go up. When that happens it means inspectors watch the company even more closely which could lead to more violations being written. The higher score can also impact insurance rates and customer relations.

We must not just cut down on speeding tickets and warnings, we must eliminate them. Speeding tickets and warnings will result in disciplinary action.

A comparison study was conducted using two identical trucks, with identical trailers and loads on the same route, from Minneapolis to the east coast, a 1000 mile trip.

Driver A was allowed to drive over the speed limit and push to get to the destination. Driver B was required to obey posted speed limits and practice safe driving techniques. Look at the two drivers and make your own determination…

Driver A – allowed to drive over the speed limit
Driver B – Required to obey the speed limit

Vehicles passed by driver

Driver A 2,000
Driver B 13

Times Driver Applied Brakes

Driver A 1,139
Driver B 652

MPH Average

Driver A 49.7 MPH
Driver B 48.9 MPH

Time Elapsed

Driver A 20 Hrs 12 Min
Driver B 20 Hrs 43 Min

Fuel Used

Driver A 169 Gal
Driver B 159 Gal

Driver A made the trip 31 minutes faster than Driver B
Driver A exposed his blind side 1,987 more times than Driver B
Driver A applied his brakes 687 more times than Driver B
Driver A only averaged .8 mph faster than Driver B
Driver A used 10 more gallons of fuel
If Driver A was paid .40 per mile, 31 minutes would have a potential earnings of around $17.60 – Now add in a speed ticket for $150.00, net loss is -$132.40.

The above information does not even take into account the added potential for accidents Driver A would have experienced. When you push it hard you have to change lanes much more, pass other vehicles more frequently, and generally just create what could be dangerous situations. Not to mention the additional fuel used while driving the way Driver A did.

So ultimately speeding does not gain you much of anything – and it goes negative when you factor in the increased chances for accidents. The risks are not worth it.