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Massachusetts Speed Limits Reduced – Fewer Accidents as a Result?

Posted by David P. McCormack

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Roadway safety is a primary concern for local governments in Massachusetts.  Earlier this month, Town Meeting members made Milton the latest town to reduce its default speed limit to 25 miles per hour in an effort to increase safety on the roads and reduce injuries and deaths in car accidents. This decision follows a recent car accident on Randolph Avenue resulting in one fatality and four serious injuries. 

An updated Massachusetts law provides the foundation for this change by permitting speed limits of 25 miles per hour in thickly settled or business districts.  This legislation became effective in November 2016 and has been widely adopted by municipalities throughout Massachusetts.

Obeying the rules of the road not only avoids tickets and citations from law enforcement, it also increases the safety of drivers, passengers, bicyclists, and pedestrians alike. More than 120,000 car accidents occur in Massachusetts each year with an average of more than 300 deaths and 4,000 other severe or serious injuries, according to datapublished by the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. Of the fatalities, an average of nearly 100 per year are speed related. The authority to lower speed limits is part of Massachusetts’ continuing effort to maximize road safety for residents and visitors.

Whether the new speed restrictions will effectively reduce the number of accidents resulting in injury or death is not yet clear as very little data has been collected since the new law went into effect.

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, SUGARMAN’s dedicated team of personal injury lawyers can help.  Please call us at 617-542-1000, email us at, or fill out a contact form.