The paper "Speeding As One Of The Most Menacing Social Problems" is a great example of research paper on social science. Speeding has become one of the most menacing social problems of contemporary society across the globe. There has been increasing cases of road accidents and fatalities that can be contributed to speeding. The people of varying ages have a different history of speeding and government through the ages has been trying to evolve measures that would create awareness among the drivers to restrict their rash driving. The various overt and covert implications of the speeding have necessitated the inclusion of innovative strategies that would promote better driving habits.
History of a speed limit The speed limit laws have traditionally been under the purview of states with little interference from the central government. But the oil crisis of 1973 forced the transport department to withhold highway funds of the states if necessary actions were not taken by the states to enforce maximum speed to 55mph with speed ranging from 65mph to 75mph in rural and urban areas. In 1995, the National Highway System Designation Act repealed the maximum limit and empowered the state to do so.
By March 2009, 32 states have raised the limit to 70mph or more (IIHS). Statistic of speeding In 2007 alone around 41059 people have been reported dead in the road accidents. 1 in every 3 road deaths amongst the children is due to rash driving and speeding, who has been traveling as passengers. More men than women are involved in road crashes with nearly 14000 male drivers and 6000 thousand women drivers (Li et al. , 1998).
There was an 11% decline in male drivers’ crash from 1975 to 2007 and a nearly 1% increase in female fatalities in road accidents. The fatalities decreased in road cases with the increase in drivers age (after 60 years). Reasons for speeding The primary reasons for increasing road accidents are rash and speed driving due to high alcohol consumption, not using a seat belt or talking on their cellphones while driving, teenage rage driving instincts and disregard to laws and regulations. Surprisingly people in the age group of 30-59 had maximum road accidents (21, 973), 12,000 in the age group of 20-29 and 6000 teenagers (16-19) were involved as per statistics of 2001-2002 (IIHS).
Controlling measures In recent years, the government has come up with stringent speed laws for speeding and rash driving, especially due to drunken driving. The government has installed speed cameras to keep track of speed driving and habitual speed drivers and awareness campaigns regarding safe driving are continuously being taken up. The various states have come up with innovative strategies for combating road crashes. Imposing increased penalties with mandatory confinement along with more police cars for patrolling highways has become a norm.
‘ Punishment is the universal response to crime and deviance in all societies’ (Miethe & Lu, 2005). The concept of punishment and the fear of confinement, not for the offense but for a sense of losing face in front of their peer groups, is a highly effective deterrence measure and would definitely serve its purpose. Rehabilitation process within the jails and in the community development programs are considered as highly effective means of reforming the criminals, especially those who are recent entrants in the crime world.
The rehabilitation programs are designed to suit the offenses and the offender gets a chance to rectify his acts of crime by serving the needs of the society and interact with people who may require his services. In one of his lectures at Oxford, Lord Phillips has quoted Charles Clarke, Home secretary, ‘ We have to make preventing reoffending the center of the organization of our correctional service… We have to create a package of support and intervention… and allow offenders to perform reparation in an ore visible way. .’ (Lord Phillip, 2006).
IHS. Motorways Laws and regulations. Available from:
Li, G.; Baker, S.P.; Langlois, J.A.; and Kelen, G.D. 1998. Are female drivers safer? An application of the decomposition method. Epidemiology 9:379-84.
Lord Phillip. (10 October, 2006). ‘Crime and Punishment’. High Sheriff’s Law Lecture. Oxford. Available from:
Miethe, Terance D and Hong Lu. (2005). Punishment. Cambridge University Press.