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Annu Rev Public Health. 2012 Apr;33:225-38. doi: 10.1146/annurev-publhealth-031811-124634. Epub 2012 Jan 3.

Speed limits, enforcement, and health consequences.

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Department of Safety and Environment, Institute of Transport Economics, NO-0349 Oslo, Norway.


This review summarizes current knowledge regarding the effects of speed limit enforcement on public health. Speed limits are commonly used around the world to regulate the maximum speed at which motor vehicles can be operated on public roads. Speed limits are statutory, and violations of them are normally sanctioned by means of fixed penalties (traffic tickets) or, in the event of serious violations, suspension of the driver's license and imposition of prison sentences. Speed limit violations are widespread in all countries for which statistics can be found. Speeding contributes more to the risk of traffic injury than do other risk factors for which estimates of population-attributable risk are available. Traffic speed strongly influences impact speed in crashes and therefore has major implications for public health.

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