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More and more Minnesotans are putting the pedal to the medal in 2021-- and State Patrol troopers are writing more and more speeding tickets.

It was Lt. Pete 'Maverick' Mitchell, Tom Cruise's character in the movie, Top Gun, who said he "feels the need... the need for speed." Of course, he was flying a fighter plane for the U.S. Navy and not speeding along a highway here in Minnesota, but apparently, a lot of us Minnesotans feel the same way these days.

And the Minnesota State Patrol (MSP) has noticed. In fact, they've not just noticed, they've been doing something about it-- like writing speeding tickets. A lot of them!  According to this Minnesota Department of Public Safety in this KARE-11 story:

Troopers across the state have given out 2,355 more speeding tickets this year than they did this time last year. Of the total number of tickets, 142 people were cited for going faster than 100 miles per hour.

And, those 142 drivers aren't the only ones REALLY putting the pedal to the medal, either. Earlier this year, the MSP reported that they've been seeing a big increase in speeders driving dangerously fast, noting that the number of speeding citations issued to drivers going over 100 miles per hour is up 92 percent this year when compared to the first two months of 2020.  The MSP highlighted a one-week period in February during which 17 drivers were ticketed for speeding violations in excess of 100 miles per hour!

Those speeds are also contributing to a concerning increase in fatal crashes in Minnesota this year, too. MSP noted that, as of Friday, March 12th, there were already 59 fatalities on Minnesota roads in 2021-- a figure we didn't hit until March 18th in 2020. And, 21 of those 59 fatalities this year in Minnesota were speed-related.

"Too often we see crashes from distracted or impaired driving where speed turns a minor crash into a fatal or life-changing event for those involved," Mike Hanson, Director of Minnesota's Office of Traffic Safety said in a release. "We all need to drive smart by going the speed limit or driving to the conditions of the road, especially in the winter. If we all do our part, we can get home safely to our families at the end of the day."

I have to say, while I've been known to push the speed limit by a few miles an hour, there's no way I could drive over 100 mph-- because my old SUV just won't go that fast! If you drive a classic car, though, it's probably easier. Keep scrolling to check out some of those iconic cars-- including the models that made their debut the year you were born!

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