Letter: Speeding on residential streets can have big consequences

Dear Editor:

Imagine hearing your phone ring while you're on a jog through the park, and picking it up only to hear loud sirens and what you think sounds like your friend. You had just dropped you kid off at their house and had decided to take a long jog while you had some free time. Your friend says into the phone, " You need to come get your kid; he got hit by some person who was speeding down the street. He drove off almost immediately after he saw what he did so nobody could get his picture but a neighbor got his license plate. I haven't had the chance to ask yet but I will soon." Does that sound like it would be fun? Speeding is very dangerous especially in rain, on blind corners, and it is harder to brake when you are speeding. Speeding is dangerous anywhere but is more dangerous in residential areas. Drivers need to slow down on residential areas.

A car hydroplanes by going too fast in high amounts of rain/flood. The tires' traction depends entirely on the tire actually reaching the ground, but when a car hydroplanes it never touches the ground. When the car moves too fast for water to move out of the way, the tires run over the water instead, thus accelerating much faster than it would have on pavement. This can cause wrecks, people getting run over, etc. Sure, people might say that you very rarely hydroplane, but if you're speeding, any storm could mean this, Even if you need to get home quick or are trying to avoid it, the storm will almost always get worse.

I walk to school, and there is one spot in particular where it is very scary to go across. It is on a street called Charleston that has a very large hill that is very steep. The two corners on either side are both blind corners that people come flying around. There is also a sign that says right turn only on both sides that few people pay attention to. Many times have I seen a car accelerate quite fast and go straight across this dangerous corner. It always is the same people each morning who do this and I watch them try to look down the hill and slam the foot down on the gas pedal. This is literally 0% safer and is actually much more dangerous that just turning and thinking "That is a blind corner that I can not see around and down that hill so I should just turn and take 30 more seconds to reach the school." Some people might think " Oh, not many cars even come up this hill." But really, when most people are driving their kids to school, it's also when most people have to drive to work as well.

Cars that are speeding brake much slower than a car moving at 15 miles per hour. This means that a car would stop much slower if a child, pet, or pedestrian ran into the street. A kid could run into the street and not see the car moving too fast down the street. The driver could hit the brakes and slow down the car but the car can be moving too fast to stop. Then, the kid's mom or friend would have to run up and grab him/her out of the way, and move away from the car. Sure, the driver might blame the mother/friend/guardian for being too careless to stop their child/friend from running into the street. But whose fault was it really, the person who let the kid run into the street, or the person who was unable to stop because they were going too fast? Yet, some people think that "Hey, I just got my brakes checked and I can stop whenever I want." Well in reality, you can't. Going more than 40 mph will still go 80 feet or more to fully stop, according to arachnoid.com.

So now you see just why speeding is so dangerous in residential areas. Driving in rough weather, blind corners nobody can see around, and not being able to brake quickly are all good reasons to not speed down residential streets. Just imagine a Seattle where you don't have to be scared of crashing nor getting hit on every corner, wouldn't it be great? You wouldn't have to think your kid was going to get hit every time they just happen to go into the street. It would be a new, different, worry free Seattle.

Max Warborg
Six Grader, Madison Middle School.

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