PLR 23-049 - PMV-4 Mishap Claims One Soldier's Life
A 24-year-old Specialist assigned to Fort Campbell, Kentucky, died in a PMV-4 mishap 19 May 2023 at 0610 local. The Soldier was traveling westbound when his vehicle crossed the centerline and continued through the left side of the road, where it eventually crashed into a tree. It was reported that excessive speed was a contributor to the mishap. The Soldier was pronounced dead at the scene. Alcohol or drug use is not suspected at this time. The safety point of contact is awaiting more information.
Since FY18, the Army has lost an average of 35 Soldiers a year to PMV-4 mishaps. This mishap was the 17th PMV-4 fatality of FY23 and above the number of fatalities for the same time last year.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, speeding endangers everyone on the road. In 2020, speeding killed 11,258 people. We all know the frustrations of modern life and juggling a busy schedule, but speed limits are put in place to protect all road users.
For more than two decades, speeding has been involved in approximately one-third of all motor vehicle fatalities. In 2020, speeding was a contributing factor in 29% of all traffic fatalities.
Speed also affects your safety even when you are driving at the speed limit but too fast for road conditions, such as during bad weather, when a road is under repair or in an area at night that isn’t well lit.
What drives speeding?
Speeding is a type of aggressive driving behavior. Several factors have contributed to an overall rise in aggressive driving:
Dealing with speeding and aggressive drivers
- Traffic — Traffic congestion is one of the most frequently mentioned contributing factors to aggressive driving, such as speeding. Drivers may respond by using aggressive driving behaviors, including speeding, changing lanes frequently or becoming angry at anyone who they believe impedes their progress.
- Running late — Some people drive aggressively because they have too much to do and are running late for work, school, their next meeting, a soccer game or other appointments.
- Anonymity — A motor vehicle insulates the driver from the world. Shielded from the outside environment, a driver can develop a sense of detachment, as if an observer of their surroundings rather than a participant. This can lead to some people feeling less constrained in their behavior when they cannot be seen by others and/or when it is unlikely they will ever again see those who witness their behavior.
- Disregard for others and the law — Most motorists rarely drive aggressively, and some never do. For others, episodes of aggressive driving are frequent, and for a small proportion of motorists, it is their usual driving behavior. Occasional episodes of aggressive driving — such as speeding and changing lanes abruptly — might occur in response to specific situations, like when the driver is late for an important appointment, but is not the driver’s normal behavior.
Speeding behavior and aggressive drivers may not only affect the speeder — it can also affect other drivers, pedestrians and bicyclists. Here are some tips for encountering speeders on the road:
- If you are in the left lane and someone wants to pass, move over and let them by.
- Give speeding drivers plenty of space. Speeding drivers may lose control of their vehicle more easily.
- Adjust your driving accordingly. Speeding is tied to aggressive driving. If a speeding driver is tailgating you or trying to engage you in risky driving, use judgment to safely steer your vehicle out of the way.
- Call the police if you believe a driver is following you or harassing you.