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To Speed Or Not To Speed? PEMCO Poll Reveals NW Driving Habits

How many miles can you go over the speed limit and not get a ticket?

According to a recent PEMCO poll, about half of Washington drivers believe that they can get away with going slightly above the cited limit by taking advantage of the “buffer zone”.  A majority of those “lead-foot drivers” set their “buffer limit” at 4mph above the posted limit, and nine out of 10 Washington drivers admit that they’ve exceeded the speed limit at least once.

Oregon drivers tend to be slightly more liberal with their interpretation of the legal speed limit:  Two thirds of drivers admit to taking advantage of the preceived “buffer zone” and more than half of those add as much as 9mph to the posted limit.

In either state, of those who admit to speeding, a majority say that they’re simply keeping up with the flow of traffic and a smaller fraction say that they speed without even realizing that they’re exceeding the limit.

The question is:  Is there really such a thing as a buffer zone?

You may have snuck by a police officer at 4 or 5 mph above the posted limit – but don’t be fooled.  A police officer can pull over a driver for going even just 1mph above the legal limit.

And this with good reason:  According to the Washington State Patrol, speeding is one of three driving behaviors where motorists are most likely to be killed or injured when drivers violate posted speed limits. Other fatal actions include driving while impaired and failure to wear a seatbelt.

Who is speeding?

An interesting fact revealed by the PEMCO poll indicates that the more you earn, the more likely you’ll speed: Almost 60% of drivers with incomes of $50,000 or more per year admit to sometimes speeding.

The same is true for drivers aged 35 or younger: Almost two-thirds of them acknowledge  speeding on occasion.

While in the past, male drivers have been considered to be more aggressive drivers, research suggests that this trend is starting to shift, according to MSN Money.  Not only are there more women driving powerful cars on the road than there were years ago, but also, more and more women are undergoing similar stresses as men, which may trigger similar driving patterns.

How does it affect your insurance?

Psychologists suggest that buyers tend to purchase vehicles that reflect their personalities.  That’s why, as insurance carriers aim to gauge the risk that a driver represents to the company, they take into consideration not only the vehicle you drive, your driving record and driving experience, but also factors such as your profession or whether you are a homeowner, to determine your insurance rates.

If you have any questions about your car insurance, or would like to get a Car Insurance Quote, please give us a call at 425-379-9200.  We’re here to help!

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