Speeding is something that many drivers do every time they get behind the wheel. If we’re all honest, it’s something we’ve done before. Maybe it was the joy of cruising at high speeds when you were young, maybe it was to counter running late for work, or maybe you just “lightly” break the speed limit by driving a bit over that limit on a consistent basis.

No matter how it happens, the truth is that speeding is dangerous. There are two main ways that it increases the amount of danger you face on the road.

First and foremost, speeding makes accidents more likely. You do not have as much reaction time if you need to stop, turn or take evasive action. You may also have a greater chance of losing physical control of the vehicle. High speeds often feel relatively safe until there is an unexpected event — a traffic jam ahead, for instance, or an unseen curve in the road — and then the danger becomes clear.

The second issue is that, when a crash does happen, the severity of the injuries is largely tied to the speed of the vehicles. You can get injured in a crash at 25 miles per hour, but your injuries may be far greater at 55. They’re greater still at 75. The faster both cars are traveling over the speed limit, the greater the odds of catastrophic injuries and even death.

Now, you may wisely choose to obey the speed limit, but you can’t control everyone else. When a speeding driver hits you, make sure you know what rights you have to financial compensation.